This is the second film in 4 years that Jim Broadbent has played "Santa" with the first being the ever popular "Arthur Christmas". Coincidentally, in "Arthur Christmas" his character also had a "Steve" helping him to successfully execute Christmas but that "Steve" was his son and brother to "Arthur". See more »
[to Santa, who claims to be the Real Santa Claus]
Are you on medication? Or worse: are you NOT on medication?
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Not perfect, but one of the BEST X-mas tales in YEARS
Before we start our regularly schedule review, lets crate context.
In the early days of Hollywood, x-mas movies were an oddity. They were in the process of finding themselves. Films like Miracle on 34th Street 1946 and Its a Wonderful Life 1947 (offically an X-mas tale because the story takes place around X-mas) were the exception, not the rule.
Flash forward about 55 years or so and now you find that some countries (like Canada) have actually formed a cottage industry just turning out X-mas movies year after year, good story or bad, entertaining or not, just to feed the "maw" of the system. (Canada has even stooped so low as to remake a B--- version of Miracle on 34th Street 1946 ... apparently spurred on the US' horrific remake of the same film in 1994).
So, therein likes the issue. When X-mas movies become commoditized, it becomes a real challenge that break away from the homogeneous sludge that passes for holiday movies these days.
(Elf 2003 pulled it off -- wonderful and recommended).
This film is not going to win any awards, but it holds the attention and has some really marvellous comedy bits buried here and there. (The "Crazy Jimmy Claus routine is worth the whole movie.) Recommended.
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