No one was more surprised than director Frank Capra when his film It's a Wonderful Life became a Christmas classic decades after its release. Capra himself didn't even think of the film as a Christmas tale, and though it premiered to mixed reviews in New York on December 20, 1946, the film did not go in to general release until after the holidays. During the 1980s It's a Wonderful Life became a staple of the holiday season, thanks to repeated showings on hundreds of local television stations. Today at 5 p.m. you can see George Bailey and his existential despair on the big screen for free at Webster University's Moore Auditorium (470 East Lockwood Avenue; 314-968-7487 or www.webster.edu/film-series).
Price: free admission