The Man Who Invented Christmas is a Christmas themed biographical drama film focusing on Charles Dickins (Dan Stevens) as he creates his classic Christmas novel A Christmas Carol, we see the trials and tribulations that lead to one of the best-selling books of all time.
I enjoyed the presentation of this film, I thought the blending of standard biopic elements and more out there fantasy elements, as he talks and interacts with his own characters, was quite an inspired choice as it allowed the film to feel fresh and not like just another biopic.
Stevens was serviceable in the role; he can convey both sides of Dickens as a character and does a good job of making the character seem whole and rounded rather than a caricature. He is the best of the cast, though that is not a tall order as a lot of the other actors are bland and forgettable.
I thought the film had pacing issues and included a number of side plots and other stories that should have been cut, I understand the film was trying to show the motivations and scars of Dickins himself, but they could have done it in a more concise and audience friendly way, as it stands certain parts are far too exposition heavy.
Overall, through the choice of how it presents its story and its characters this film feels slightly above the standard biopic and is enjoyable, however a mostly bland cast and a few pacing issues stop it of being great.
The fantasy and reality aspects
It feels like a well-considered Christmas film
The wider cast are bland
It has pacing issues
It goes too far in trying to explain what drives Dickins and relies too heavily on exposition
Reviewed by Luke