On the eve of Christmas, Sheriff Rick Langston has lost his holiday spirit. But when he arrests a home intruder claiming to be Santa Claus, his world gets turned upside-down ! With the help...
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On the eve of Christmas, Sheriff Rick Langston has lost his holiday spirit. But when he arrests a home intruder claiming to be Santa Claus, his world gets turned upside-down ! With the help of Lucy, the new girl in town, Santa helps show Rick that even when you feel that all is lost, love is all around you.Written by
There is a sticker on the sheriff's computer monitor that says, "Real Heroes Don't Wear Capes." The sheriff is played by Dean Cain who was Superman in Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman. See more »
In Rockford, Michigan, Rick is the sheriff. He won't be much longer, as he has been offered a job as police chief of Grand Rapids. He is alone when he gets a call from daughter Kara. He is pleased to hear from her, but Kara's mother Diane, who Rick describes as "The Spawn of Satan", demands she hang up and go to bed. Rick and Diane are no longer together, and Diane is with Frederico (who is nice) and won't let Kara see her dad for the holiday.
Kara falls asleep and dreams she is at the North Pole where a friendly elf lets her meet Santa Claus and ask him for what she wants for Christmas. She whispers her wish, so we don't hear, and Santa says it will be difficult but he will try.
Tom is one of Rick's deputies and in line to take over. Shirley is the other. Tom brings in a couple of juvenile delinquents and behaves much like Barney Fife, scaring the boys. Then Rick acts as the diplomatic Sheriff Andy, friendly but firm, giving the boys appropriate consequences. The Mayberry similarities don't end there, as Raynor the town drunk comes in wanting to be locked up.
Mr. Harold is depressed because he will be alone this Christmas, as his son lives in Chicago and won't be coming home this year.
Rick seems so nice, but he believes Christmas is a made-up holiday whose purpose is for people to buy junk they don't need. When he gets to go home, where he lives alone with his German Shepherd Max, he is acting like Scrooge and the neighbors annoy him with their demands that he put up lights like they do. He did, however, have a couple of wreaths.
Once inside, Rick is startled by an intruder. It is a kind old man with a white beard, wearing a red and black flannel shirt and faded blue jeans. The man seems to know everything about everyone and he cannot be shaken even by Rick pulling a gun and calling for backup. That means Tom, who was relieved not to have to be around his critical mother-in-law Sylvia who is still pretty and refuses to be called Grandma. Or his son who wanted a Commando video game that cannot be found anywhere.
The old man is taken down to the station and locked up along with Raynor. He continues to behave in certain ways suggesting he is you- know-who, including reciting lyrics from a song about a certain man coming to town. Rick continues to be a Scrooge. Meanwhile, Lucy and her bratty teenage daughter Alana are new in town. The kind Rick shows up again and invites them to the church's Christmas pageant, and to a party Tom and his family are having afterward.
At one point Rick dreams everyone in his life is Santa Claus. This is funny.
I think we can all predict the various events that will happen. And, yes, there are multiple Christmas miracles in this corny but family- friendly story.
Paul Hopper makes the perfect Santa Claus. He never says his name, but at least one person knows that's who he really is.
James Cowans playing Mr. Harold gives another standout performance. Mark Boyd as the town drunk is quite good too. These are the only acting performances really worth mentioning, but this a corny family holiday story and that's what you would tend to expect.
The Christmas pageant is not shown in its entirety but in what we do see, the kids seem to understand the important messages. And there is a hilarious moment that Alfonso Ribeiro should be introducing. Not that the pastor agrees; he is a Scrooge himself, saying The Lord has no sense of humor and never has.
I wish there had been more good music. There's not a lot of Christmas music, or if there is it's not recognizable as Christmas music to me. Most of the so-called "music" is the sort of thing young people enjoy.
I am curious about the V-chip rating used when I saw this. No one (except for one time) curses except the pastor (who apologizes) and even Clark Gable was worse than that, if you know what I mean. Most of the time when a person is about to curse the person is admonished not to. The words "cram it" are quoted from a message from Diane about Kara, but the quote is quickly stopped because no one needs to hear any more.
It's a wonderful family film if you don't have really high expectations. If you're turned off by formula feel-good fluff, turn somewhere else.
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