Miracle On 34th Street (1947)
When Kris Kringle discovers that the person assigned to play Santa in the annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is intoxicated, he is indignant and complains to event director Doris Walker, who persuades Kris to take his place. Kringle is hired as the Santa for Macy’s flagship New York City store on 34th Street.
Doris’ attorney neighbor, Fred Gailey, takes Susan to see Kris at Macy’s. Doris, divorced, has raised her daughter, Susan, not to believe in “fairy tales.” When Doris sees Kris conversing in Dutch with a girl who does not know English, her cynicism is shaken. Doris asks Kris to tell Susan that he is not really Santa Claus, but Kris insists that he is. Kris then makes a deal with Fred: he will work on Susan’s skepticism about Santa while Fred does the same with Doris, who is disillusioned by her failed marriage. Susan reveals to Kris her wish for a house; Kris promises to do his best.
Shady tricks by a rival department store result in a formal hearing before the New York Supreme Court to have Kris Kringle declared insane and permanently committed because he believes he’s Santa Claus. When District Attorney Thomas Mara gets Kris to assert that he is Santa Claus, he rests his case, believing he has proven his point. Fred, representing Kris, argues that Kris is not insane because he actually is Santa Claus. Mara demands proof on the basis of “some competent authority.” Fred presents the judge with three letters addressed to “Santa Claus” and delivered to Kris, asserting the U.S. Post Office (and therefore the Federal Government) has acknowledged that Kris is Santa Claus; Harper demands “further exhibits,” and mailmen bring in 21 full bags of letters. Case dismissed.
On Christmas morning, Susan is disappointed to find that Santa did not bring what she wanted. Kris then gives Fred and Doris a route home to avoid traffic, taking them by the house of Susan’s dreams that now has a “For Sale” sign in the yard. Fred suggests they get married and purchase the house.