7.1/10
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81 user 191 critic

Arthur Christmas (2011)

Trailer
2:33 | Trailer

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ON DISC
Santa's clumsy son Arthur gets put on a mission with St. Nick's father to give out a present they misplaced to a young girl in less than 2 hours.

Directors:

,

Writers:

(screenplay), (screenplay)
Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 3 wins & 22 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Arthur (voice)
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Steve (voice)
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Grandsanta (voice)
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Santa (voice)
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Mrs Santa (voice)
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Bryony (voice)
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Peter (voice)
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Chief De Silva (voice)
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Gwen (voice)
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Ernie Clicker (voice)
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Lead Elf (voice)
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Lead Elf (voice)
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Lead Elf (voice)
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Lead Elf (voice)

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Storyline

Arthur Christmas reveals the incredible, never-before seen answer to every child's question: 'So how does Santa deliver all those presents in one night?' The answer: Santa's exhilarating, ultra-high-tech operation hidden beneath the North Pole. But at the center of the film is a story about a family in a state of comic dysfunction and an unlikely hero, Arthur, with an urgent mission that must be completed before Christmas morning dawns. Written by Sony Pictures Animation

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

All elf breaks loose See more »


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

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

Parents Guide:

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Details

Official Sites:

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Country:

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Language:

Release Date:

23 November 2011 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Arthur Christmas in 3D  »

Box Office

Budget:

$100,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$12,068,931 (USA) (18 November 2011)

Gross:

$46,440,491 (USA) (6 January 2012)
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Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

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Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

3rd animated feature film, with James McAvoy as the voice of the lead character. The other films were Strings (2004) and Gnomeo & Juliet (2011). See more »

Goofs

Arthur falls out of the sleigh as it flies over Cuba. Several seconds later, the gift-wrapped bike falls out, landing directly in front of him. Given the speed at which the sleigh was flying, the bike should have landed much further away. See more »

Quotes

Arthur: I've got a phobia of being beheaded - and heights, and speed, and reindeer, and buttons.
Grandsanta: Buttons?
Arthur: Yeah, I'm pretty much scared of everything.
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Crazy Credits

After the end of the credits, there is a seven second scene, all in black silhouette on a blue background. One of the elf-lowering-cables descends, pauses, then lifts up an elf, who proceeds to throw snowballs at the screen until it's all black. See more »


Soundtracks

Silent Night
Written by Joseph Mohr, Franz Gruber (as Franz Xaver Gruber) and John Freeman Young
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

 
Delightfully charming
19 November 2011 | by (Orange County, California) – See all my reviews

Arthur Claus (James McAvoy) is the bumbling son of the reigning Santa, Malcolm Claus (Jim Broadbent). Arthur is relegated to the Letter Department where he can presumably do no damage. Arthur's brother Steve (Hugh Laurie) is the heir apparent to the title of Santa. Steve is handsome, confident, and in charge of the North Pole command center that monitors Santa's gift-giving flight around the world. The film opens with a bravura set piece showing how Santa is able to stop in millions of homes in one night. Hint: he has the help of thousands of elves.

When Arthur discovers that one gift was accidentally undelivered, he becomes determined to get it to the unfortunate girl before Christmas sunrise. Even with the help of his retired grandsanta (Bill Nighy) and a perky elf (Ashley Jensen) from the Wrapping Department, can Arthur travel around the world in time?

There have been many movies over the years where Christmas must be saved from disaster, but Arthur Christmas has a very creative take on it. From the opening scene where it's established that Santa is really a dynasty through the centuries, a title handed down from father to son, to the paramilitary operation to get millions of presents delivered in one night, to the misadventures of Arthur and his grandsanta as they try to make sure one little girl is not disappointed, Arthur Christmas is fun, creative, and original. Produced by Aardman Animations in association with Sony Pictures Animation, this CGI animated film delivers Aardman's distinct brand of quirky humor and style.

The art direction maintains the slightly skewed look of an Aardman claymation film. The character designs are asymmetric and the surface textures are realistic yet bold. The North Pole command center and Santa's high-tech sleigh are clean and modern.

Sometimes celebrity voice talent backfires, but here it works beautifully, the English accents lending a sense of gravity that heightens the silliness. Bill Nighy is particularly good, conveying wisdom that is tinged with resentment of the modern gift-delivery methods his son and grandson use.

Arthur Christmas is a funny, heartwarming, and poignant look at the Santa Claus mythos, adding a family dynamic that will resonate with children and adults. I expect Arthur Christmas will become a joyful holiday favorite for years to come.


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