• PG, 1 hr. 56 min.
  • Comedy
  • Directed By:    David Dobkin
  • In Theaters:    Nov 9, 2007 Wide
  • On DVD:    Nov 25, 2008
  • Warner Bros. Pictures

Fred Claus Reviews

Page 1 of 8
Adam Tobias
Watertown Daily Times
May 20, 2008

Vaughn's act may be toned down a bit, but he still plays the same fast-talking, quip-spouting arrogant schmuck that he usually does, and it wears thin real fast.

Full Review | Original Score: 2/5
Jonathan W. Hickman
Entertainment Insiders
November 17, 2007

A neat idea badly executed. Early in the film, there are some funny bits, but by the end, the narrative completely loses its way. Without the weight of the personalities involved, the film would be quickly forgotten.

Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Mark Keizer
Boxoffice Magazine
November 9, 2007

If Vaughn is trying to test the family-film waters without abandoning his core audience, it doesn't work here.

Stephen Himes
Film Snobs
December 11, 2007

Paul Giamatti is forced to play Santa like a socially awkward version of Vince Vaughn

Full Review | Original Score: 2/10
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic
November 9, 2007

[Fred Claus] has apparently studied Elf and figured out everything that could have gone wrong with its fish-out-of-water Christmas fable.

Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
James Berardinelli
ReelViews
Top Critic
November 8, 2007

The film's multitude of flaws might be more easily forgiven if the movie didn't overstay its welcome by at least a half-hour.

Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Pete Hammond
Maxim
November 9, 2007

A ho-ho-hum yuletide comedy trying to shoehorn Vaughn's fast talking wise-guy brand into a warm and fuzzy Christmas confection that seems like it has been focus-grouped to smithereens.

| Original Score: 1.5/5
Kelly Vance
East Bay Express
April 28, 2011

It's no improvement on Bad Santa, or National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, for that matter.

Rossiter Drake
San Francisco Examiner
April 9, 2008

Rather than creating imaginative situations for Vaughn to explore, director David Dobkin merely asks that Vaughn be himself, as if his personality were big enough to wring humor out of a comic vacuum.

| Original Score: 2/4
Amy Biancolli
Houston Chronicle
Top Critic
November 9, 2007

The movie's constantly shifting timbre takes some getting used to, and it's hard to escape the feeling that a whole lot of actors (Rachel Weisz, Kathy Bates, Miranda Richardson) are wasted in a whole lot of roles.

Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Kirk Honeycutt
Hollywood Reporter
Top Critic
November 6, 2007

With Santa Claus movies like Fred Claus, who needs Ebenezer Scrooge?

Chris Hewitt (St. Paul)
St. Paul Pioneer Press
November 9, 2007

The film is a disaster, with an ending that is exactly the kind of schmaltz Vaughn usually makes fun of.

Full Review | Original Score: 1/4
Christian Toto
Washington Times
January 19, 2008

Fred Claus won't make us forget "Rudolph," "Frosty" or even "The Santa Clause."

Full Review | Original Score: 2/4
Katey Rich
CinemaBlend.com
November 4, 2007

So calculated in its sentimentality that it almost feels cynical.

Full Review | Original Score: 2.5/5
Nick Schager
Slant Magazine
November 6, 2007

A holiday fable far too safe and toothless to take advantage of Vince Vaughn's ribald strengths.

Full Review | Original Score: 1.5/4
Kam Williams
NewsBlaze
November 11, 2007

Don't make the mistake of misreading this mean-spirited production as a kid-friendly Christmas flick.

Full Review | Original Score: 0/4
Eric D. Snider
EricDSnider.com
November 8, 2007

It's like they took the most tiresome elements of 10 different holiday films and patched them together into one ugly quilt.

Full Review | Original Score: D+
Jeff Bayer
The Scorecard Review
March 4, 2008

Unfortunately, this is a broad family comedy that depends on odd sound effects (zonks! splat!) during every scene...

Full Review | Original Score: 5/10
Stephen Hunter
Washington Post
Top Critic
November 8, 2007

Vaughn's con-man jive doesn't get much play in this one; he spends most of his time as a bitter creep, and the writing (by Dan Fogelman) isn't sharp enough to make the hipster-at-the-North-Pole theme pay off in any meaningful way.

Manohla Dargis
New York Times
Top Critic
November 9, 2007

Fred Claus is a tacky would-be comedy about family dysfunction that fronts some Scrooge attitude only to dissolve into slobbering sentimentality and canned uplift.

| Original Score: 1.5/5
Brent Simon
Shared Darkness
May 15, 2012

Alicia Potter
Boston Phoenix
April 23, 2009


ComingSoon.net
November 12, 2007


St. Louis Post-Dispatch
Top Critic
November 17, 2007


Screen International
November 17, 2007


Digital Spy
July 14, 2011

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