I love the story of A Christmas Carol and have both the Alistair Sim version (in my opinion the best by far) and the Albert Finney musical version on DVD (as well as Scrooged with Bill Murray) I have also watched the Patrick Stewart version and even the obscure one with George C Scott and all have their charms.
HOWEVER - This version is just totally abominable and here's why;
Firstly it is very, very, very Americanised. For a Dickensian classic, this is a major mistake. The whole reason Dickens' stories are so enduringly popular is because they are accurate depictions of Victorian ENGLAND. They are quaint and atmospheric and steeped in character. This film version is brash and gaudy and almost Broadway, retaining NONE of the essence of the story or any of the brooding atmosphere of impending doom and melancholy.
Secondly, although the Albert Finney version is highly enjoyable, the story of A Christmas Carol is sombre and thought provoking. It is a morality tale and one of hope and faith in the human spirit. Now, I'm not saying there shouldn't be lighter moments, but having the majority of the story told in a low-key way serves to contrast much more effectively with the life-affirming ending. having Kelsey Grammer scampering about throughout the film totally misses the point of the story.
I just wish Hollywood would resist the urge to Americanise classic British stories when, in doing so, they inevitable destroy them.
Having said all this, if you are completely unfamiliar with the story and don't mind that this version bears little resemblance to the book in tone and style and are just looking for a fluffy little Christmas film then it may well be ideal, for anyone else I'd say - AVOID THIS LIKE THE PLAGUE!!