The amateur detective Octavius is asked to play 'Santa Claus' at the home of his friends, the Randall family. He picks up a costume and goes to visit them. Although Mrs. Randall already has a 'Santa Claus' costume available, Octavius decides to wear his own. But a burglar sneaks into the house, puts on the other costume, knocks out Octavius, and robs the family. When Octavius comes to, he is determined to catch the criminal. Written by
Entertaining Feature, & One of the Better Movies in the Series
This entertaining feature is one of the better movies in the 'Octavius, Amateur Detective' series. It has an interesting story, and it builds things up to a resourceful chase sequence that combines suspense with humor. It does have some of the technical flaws, mainly in the editing, that were unfortunately common in the series, but otherwise it's pretty good.
As Octavius, Barry O'Moore efficiently defines the energetic, slightly self-satisfied amateur detective, making him likable despite his flaws and blind spots. Here, Octavius is asked to dress up as 'Santa Claus' for the benefit of his friends' children, only to become involved with a burglar who uses a 'Santa' suit for his own purposes. There is also a little romance thrown in on the side.
The best part of the movie is the chase sequence between the two 'Santas', which has some amusing moments and a clever outcome. The pace is a little more even than in other Octavius features, and the editing is also better, with only one or two really significant defects.
For a time, this series must have been relatively popular, given the number of features in it. The lively approach and the simple but well-defined central character also keep it watchable today.
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