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David Burton Morris
Recently uprooted from New England, the Emerson family (Shelley Long, Robert Hays) have moved to the balmy desert southwest and the discouraged Molly claims "it doesn't feel like Christmas." Crestfallen at the thought that Santa is just a myth, young daughter Judy sets an elaborate trap and successfully snares Santa Claus. The parents call the police to report this strange but jolly intruder. Santa (Dick Van Patten) tries to prove his identity, but is arrested. Judy pleads with her father explaining that millions of kids will go without presents. Santa is placed in jail with Max (Stacy Keach), a ne'er-do-well biker. Back at the Emerson house, Bill is awakened by strange noises and surprised to see live reindeer on the roof. Now a believer, Bill goes to the police station and free Santa Claus. But the bumbling police mistake Max for Santa, and release Max the biker instead. Comic complications ensue, and Christmas hangs in the balance. Written by
Elves armed with silly string are just a part of this fun movie!
Bill (Robert Hays) and Molly (Shelley Long) have moved their family from the northeast to the desert southwest. It was supposed to be a good career move for Bill but he is working lots of extra hours. Molly is having trouble getting her home business growing and laments the change in climate. With the Christmas holiday near, both Bill and Molly are worried about money and missing out on a "white Christmas". On top of that, son Mike has been telling his younger sister, Judy, that Santa does not exist. Judy won't hear of it and makes a "trap" (string and contraptions) to catch Santa when he arrives at their house, which he does! Santa (Dick Van Patten) is a jolly old soul but that does not prevent Bill from thinking he is a burglar and he has Santa arrested and thrown in jail. With children everywhere waiting for Santa to visit their homes, will Kris Kringle be able to deliver his goods? This movie started rather slowly but finished quite nicely. The plot line is fun and the cast is a dream, as Stacy Keach, Corbin Bernsen, Amanda Pays, and Adrienne Barbeau also make their appearances. Children will love to see the elves in the movie, as they not only look genuine but use silly string to get their way when dealing with the police force! Production values and costumes are nice, too. All in all, why not make it a tradition to watch a couple of new-to-you Christmas films each year? And, by all means, start with this one, for it has humor and good messages to extend to every viewer.
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