The Santa Clause (1994)

Rating: 8/10

Scott Calvin accidentally kills Santa Claus but because of the Santa Clause he’s now the new Santa Claus. He and his son Charlie are going to have to prove to the world, especially his ex-wife, that Scott is the real Santa.

This came out in theaters when I was 9 and I remember seeing it with my grandmother and we both really enjoyed the movie. Of course, I was 9 and she grew up in the 20s and 30s so I’m assuming it was something that we both found a common ground on despite our age differences. Anyway, I haven’t seen it in probably 20 years and I’ve never seen any of the sequels. So, I kind of assumed it wouldn’t have aged well. But this actually wasn’t bad. There’s a few more grown-up jokes than I realized that went right over my head as a kid so there was new enjoyment to be had. I also felt that most of the comedy is pretty good, though not exactly rolling on the floor with its hilarity it got more than a few chuckles out of me.

Also, I feel this is a very good Christmas film which will probably one day be considered a Christmas classic if it isn’t already. I think it has the right amount of sentimentality and family-friendly humor that it really can be enjoyed by all. Even if you don’t celebrate Christmas I feel it’s more about Santa and not so much about any other traditions around that particular holiday. Well, unless you really don’t like Santa in any way…

I have to say that there are a lot of child actors in this as most of Santa’s elves are also played by children. They do a really good job in their roles though, especially the actor playing Charlie. I think it helps that everything about this movie is more than a tad silly. It makes it almost perfect for children to play a part.

Oh, one more thing before I score everything… that you already know the answer to because I put the answer at the top. But it’s rare for me to see a film that doesn’t really have a villain that also works as a film in its entirety. This does have a little bit of Man versus Society that you might remember when learning about types of conflicts in High School English class, but it’s not really what drives the film. I’m actually not entirely sure what drives the film outside of a general sense of wonder and letting yourself imagine a little.

SCORING:

+8: a funny film about Santa that is a nearly perfect Christmas film, despite not having an antagonist

-1: The graphics are super dated. It’s painful to watch

+1: Surprisingly good child actors in this

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