Viewed – 16 December 2018 Netflix
In hindsight, Kurt Russel makes for a perfect Santa Claus, but as I sat down to watch this I thought … really? I’ve been a fan of this guy for a long time (Kurt I mean, although who doesn’t like Santa?), and this story has two kids on Christmas Eve out to catch him in the act of delivering presents, and unwittingly sabotage Christmas when they stow away on his slay.
It’s a fairly typical Hollywood rendition of a Christmas movie and focuses on a family who have since lost the children’s father who was a fire fighter, and we get a stereotypical moody teenager on the brink of going off the rails with the wrong crowd, and a spirited younger sister who still believes in the magic of Christmas. I’ll admit the somewhat motor-mouth young girl playing the sister got irritating fast, and the squabbling between her and her brother was cliched as hell. Yet this is Kurt Russell’s movie and showcases an actor, who let’s agree hasn’t been in that big a stuff of late, seriously on top of his game and makes an initially grumpy Santa very likeable and fun. The movie’s budget sadly shows cut backs in the CGI department, with the elves looking like Minion rejects, and overly this isn’t that flashy or visually creative. A small twist towards the end involving Santa’s hat doesn’t make much sense either.
However for a perfect getting in the mood for Christmas experience, this does the trick, is funny, exciting in parts and delivers one of the most endearing Santas I think I’ve ever seen on screen. Worth a watch.
Verdict: 3 /5