Santa's first born daughter, Rudolfa, is secretly selling pieces of the North Pole, and eventually take over where she attempts to ruin Christmas, and replace Santa's workshop with a brand ... See full summary »
When Lucy Cullins, a successful but cranky producer at a home shopping network, hires an actor named Nick to play Santa Claus on the network she gets more than she bargained for. Nick ... See full summary »
Brian Stokes Mitchell
A developmentally challenged young man with a penchant for caring for animals in need sets out to convince his family - and their whole rural community - to participate in a local shelter's... See full summary »
Sara Vancamp ('Eva LaRue') is a busy mom with no Christmas spirit. Christine (Summer Glau), an elf from Santa's village who wonders if there could be more to life than making toys in the ... See full summary »
MARTHA EVANS has been abandoned by her ne'er-do-well husband, who took all their cash and left her homeless and virtually destitute with her two daughters and stepson. Martha leaves town in... See full summary »
For Kathy Ireland devotees, Christmas freaks, and royalists.
You've heard of "King Midas In Reverse"? Kathy Ireland is Orson Welles in reverse - meaning to say the swimsuit model-cum-actress-cum-designer-cum-Christian's never done a movie as BAD as her debut ("Alien From L.A."). "Once Upon A Christmas" continues this tradition, though not alas for lack of trying.
This TV movie is based on the premise that Santa Claus has become disillusioned with his day job, what with so many naughty people in the world and anti-Kringle websites ("Jingle bells, Santa smells..."); but his good-hearted daughter Kristin (Kathy, but who else?) still feels there's a chance for December 25, so she agrees to try and change the mind of the Morgans, with the future of Yuletide at stake. But the father (John Dye) is business-minded, his children are avaricious and intent on getting rid of every potential substitute mum, and their uncle (Wayne Thomas Yorke, in the movie's best performance) is hardly the ideal guardian. Plus our heroine's sister is little more than the Grinch in human form...
All of which could, in better hands, have proven to be a decent little seasonal movie; it certainly has good intentions on its side, and isn't too shameless in its pitch for the "Touched By An Angel" audience (I knew John Dye had been on it, and I bet myself that Kathy had also been alongside Roma Downey at one point. I was right). But better writing and directing (Steven H. Berman and Tibor Takacs respectively) would have helped, with the amusing earlier scenes at the North Pole wiped out by the poorly handled climax; decent special effects - Kathy's sleigh ride makes "Superboy" look good - and child actors who can actually act wouldn't have gone amiss either. For a movie that's supposed to be about restoring the Christmas spirit, this is fairly low on spirit itself; it's never really as heartwarming as it should be, and depressingly short on humour as well (the villain gets surprisingly little time, with the emphasis on the family).
Kathy Ireland is, however, endearing (as well as looking a treat throughout
as the credits point out, "Special Thanks to The Kathy Ireland Signature
Collection"), and the movie is more bearable than "Ernest Saves Christmas" or the "Miracle on 34th Street" remake. It would be nice to think that the sequel ("Twice Upon A Christmas") is an improvement, but I'm not holding my breath. (For those wondering why this is good for royalists, a certain Edward Wessex is one of the executive producers. Well, he has to do something...)
3 of 8 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?