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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Storyline

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

Taglines:

This holiday, discover your inner elf.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

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Details

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Release Date:

7 November 2003 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Elf, el duende  »

Box Office

Budget:

$33,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$31,113,501 (USA) (9 November 2003)

Gross:

$173,398,518 (USA)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film's exterior of Gimbels department store has previously been reported to be a digitally altered view of the Macy's flagship store on 34th Street in Manhattan. This is incorrect. It is actually 295 Fifth Avenue at 30th Street, also known as the Textile Building. But it is true that considerable CG work went into transforming it into "Gimbels". The actual Gimbels was the main competitor for Macy's, with its flagship store located a block away on 33rd Street. It closed in 1986, and the site is now the Manhattan Mall. See more »

Goofs

In the beginning of the boardroom scene when Miles Finch is listening to their book ideas, his little black book full of story ideas moves back and forth from his left hand to his right hand when switching camera shots. See more »

Quotes

[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.
[...]
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Crazy Credits

Near the end of the credits, the original score from the film plays over in the background, and then the last one thing showing was the title of the film. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Film School for Kids (2004) See more »

Soundtracks

Jingle Bell Rock
(1957)
Written by Joe Beal and Jim Boothe (as Jim Boothe)
Performed by Wayne Newton
Courtesy of Capitol Records
Under license from EMI Film & Television Music
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

A really nice, funny movie for Christmas despite a little bit of the inevitable smaltz
16 November 2003 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

Accidentally finding his way into Santa's bad once Christmas Eve, little baby orphan Buddy ends up in the north pole, where he is raised by the elves as one of their own. As he gets ever bigger and less and less suited to the elf lifestyle he is told about his real father and decides to go to New York to find him. However Buddy's natural smile and elfish enthusiasm doesn't really fit in with New York, not to mention a father who rejects him.

When I first saw the trailer for this film I laughed slightly but I also thought that it could easily be just awful. Despite this fear I decided to go and see it on the basis of seeing Ferrell in the Reloaded MTV spoof on the DVD and being very funny. I was glad that I did as the film was refreshingly funny very enjoyable despite the weaknesses inherent in a seasonable film of this nature. The jokes are a mix of adult and children

  • but not separately, the humour is of a nature families can all enjoy
rather than being of a `one for me and one for the kids' type.

The film does get a little sweet towards the end, but it manages to avoid this usual trap for the majority of the film and can't be expected to not be all Christmas cheer at some point! The fish out of water stuff is pretty funny and Farrell makes his character funny without being annoying to the audience (as he feared he might be from the trailer). Caan is good but has to work with the `scrooge' character of the film and thus gets fewer laughs. The support cast is good with fun turns from Newhart, Asner and Steenburger.

It does get a little sickly sweet towards the end and the fish out of water jokes do wear a little thin towards the end but mostly it is very funny and refreshingly fun to watch. The film is made better by a performance from Farrell that is perfectly pitched without being annoying and full of spark and wit.


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