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Elf (2003)

PG  |   |  Comedy, Family, Fantasy  |  7 November 2003 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 133,247 users   Metascore: 64/100
Reviews: 376 user | 149 critic | 38 from Metacritic.com

After inadvertently wreaking havoc on the elf community due to his ungainly size, a man raised as an elf at the North Pole is sent to the U.S. in search of his true identity.



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Title: Elf (2003)

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Cast overview, first billed only:


Buddy was a baby in an orphanage who stowed away in Santa's sack and ended up at the North Pole. Later, as an adult human who happened to be raised by elves, Santa allows him to go to New York City to find his birth father, Walter Hobbs. Hobbs, on Santa's naughty list for being a heartless jerk, had no idea that Buddy was even born. Buddy, meanwhile, experiences the delights of New York City (and human culture) as only an elf can. When Walter's relationship with Buddy interferes with his job, he is forced to reevaluate his priorities. Written by Ken Miller <wkmiller704@yahoo.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


This holiday, discover your inner elf.

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for some mild rude humor and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:



Official Sites:




Release Date:

7 November 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Vilenjak  »

Box Office


$33,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$31,113,501 (USA) (7 November 2003)


$173,381,405 (USA) (27 February 2004)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The cotton balls Buddy eats while in the Doctors office were actually Cotton Candy that had not been dyed. See more »


In Central Park, while trying to fix Santa's sleigh, we see Buddy through the trap door. But in the long shot, as the sleigh rises off the ground a few feet, Buddy has disappeared. This happens several times in the scene. See more »


[first lines]
Papa Elf: Oh, hello. You're, uh, you're probably here about the story.
[the pages flip to show Papa Elf talking to the camera]
Papa Elf: Elves love to tell stories. I-I'll bet you didn't know that about elves. There's, uh, probably a lot of things you didn't know about elves. Another, another interesting, uh, elfism, uh, there are only three jobs available to an elf. The first is making shoes at night while, you know, while the old cobbler sleeps.
See more »


Remade as Elf: Buddy's Musical Christmas (2014) See more »


Santa Claus Party
Written by Eddie Pola and George Wyle
Performed by Les Baxter
Courtesy of Capitol Records
Under license from EMI Film & Television Music
See more »

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User Reviews

Great, Clean Christmas movie!
3 December 2004 | by (Colorado) – See all my reviews

It was so nice to be able to sit down and watch a movie featuring an SNL actor without having to mute or fast forward any crude parts. Granted, this may not be Will Farrell's most amazing performance, but if you want a new Christmas movie to watch this season, I highly recommend Elf. I talked to a few people who thought the movie was stupid, but that was because they were expecting Will Farrell's character to be a duplicate of his SNL performances. So, to fully enjoy this movie, watch it without any expectations and remember that it's okay to have a childlike sense of humor--nobody's too cool for a great Christmas movie. I love most all the movies from Adam Sandler, Rob Schneider, Will Farrell, Jim Carrey, Chris Farley, Chevy Chase, and David Spade, but most of them aren't appropriate for viewers of all ages. Elf is a movie you can throw in the VCR and not have to worry about what the kids hear or see on it. Thanks, Will, for putting out a hilarious movie that the whole family can watch!

63 of 93 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
6.9!!! just_jesss
Probably the second worst Christmas movvie of all time chinaskee-418-613225
terrifyigly horrific garbage mark.barefoot
If my husband's long-lost son showed up... bsmale
This movie is not appropriate for children really should be pg13 crunchman74
Did Alan Silvestri rip off the melody in this score? dmfreck
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