• It's a Wonderful Life (1946)

It's a Wonderful Life

Release Date: January 7th, 1946

PG |2 hr 9 min

Plot Summary

After George Bailey (James Stewart) wishes he had never been born, an angel (Henry Travers) is sent to earth to make George's wish come true. George starts to realize how many lives he has changed and impacted, and how they would be different if he was never there.

Cast: James Stewart, Donna Reed, Lionel Barrymore, Thomas Mitchell, Henry Travers, Beulah Bondi, Frank Faylen, Ward Bond

Director: Frank Capra

Genres: Comedy drama

Production Co: Liberty Films, RKO Radio Pictures Inc.

Distributors: RKO Radio Pictures

Keywords: Wife , Transformation , Emotional , Small town , Charming , Friend , Heartwarming , Marriage , Rescue , 1930s , Fall

Ratings & Reviews

  • 100
    Roger EbertChicago Sun-Times

    It's one of those ageless movies, like "Casablanca" or "The Third Man," that improves with age. Some movies, even good ones, should only be seen once. When we know how they turn out, they've surrendered their mystery and appeal. Other movies can be viewed an indefinite number of times. Like great music, they improve with familiarity. It's a Wonderful Life falls in the second category. show more

  • 100
    The Hollywood Reporter

    This couldn't be other than a Capra picture, the humanness of its story the dominant factor at every turn of situation. His direction of the individual characterizations delivered is also distinctively his, and the performances, from the starring roles of James Stewart and Donna Reed down to the smallest bit, are magnificent. When Capra is at his best, no one can top him. show more

  • 100
    Michael WilmingtonChicago Tribune

    The most well-loved of all Christmas movies. show more

See all critic reviews on metacritic.com


Nominated Best Motion Picture
Nominated Sound Recording
Nominated Actor
Nominated Film Editing
Nominated Directing
Winner Best Director - Motion Picture