Genre: Christmas, Comedy, Drama, Family, Fantasy.
Starring: Tim Allen, Eric Lloyd, Judge Reinhold, Wendy Crewson, David Krumholtz, Peter Boyle.
Year Of Release: 1994
Certificate: U (UK)
Runtime: 97 Minutes
Director: John Pasquin
Synopsis: “When a man inadvertantly kills Santa on Christmas Eve, he finds himself magically recruited to take his place.” IMDB
One of the better mainstream Christmas films to come our way, now 20 years old and still retaining that schmaltzy festive magic, but with a decent story that relies on character, heart and humour rather than truckloads of slapstick and cheap visuals.
Tim Allen surfing the peak of this TV and movie career comes across, to me, a little over-confident in his ability as being funnier than he actually is. While the script isn’t awful, it’s not that funny, but Allen gurns and quips and groans over his puns and silly actions that I think he feels is laugh out loud funny, but really it’s a little cheesy. But with a decent supporting cast with young Eric Lloyd, the always-passionate Judge Reinhold and likeable David Krumholtz as our Head Elf, Allen is in good form all round.
With most of the story set in the everyday community, it gives us lots of comical moments which see Allen slowly transform into our new Santa – this is fun to see and watch him and the people around him try to find explanations as to the increase in weight and excessive facial hair. With nothing offensive, crude or adult, this is easy festive viewing for all the family with plenty of heart-warming moments that centre on family and relationships, rather than just fantasy and adventure.