Santa Claus: The Movie Reviews
"When you give extra kisses, you get bigger hugs."
It's really two movies in one, with the first one dealing with the myth of jolly St. Nick and the second one a more modern take on the commercialization of the holiday. Neither are any good. The first half is dark and dreary, as Santa and his wife are apparently the spirit of a deceased couple who make gifts for the children in their village.
The second half has more in common with "Halloween 3" than the Grinch, as a scenery-chewing John Lithgow attempts to take over the world with an insidious new toy. That would hardly seem like the makings of a new holiday classic, and you'd be right. The entire film is drenched in unbearable schmaltz, trying to manipulate the audience into feeling the joy of Christmas, but none of it feels authentic. You'd get more honest emotion out of a Hallmark movie-of-the-week, and the special effects are just atrocious.
After you stop to consider that by some reports, the filmmakers spent $50 million on this, you have to wonder just where all of that money went. certainly they had to make a small fortune from Coke and McDonald's for the embarrassing product placement. Nobody involved in the production of this turkey apparently had any shame. "Santa Claus: The Movie" alternates between being depressingly dull and glaringly garish. It seems like the people behind it were more concerned with selling lunchboxes than celebrating the spirit of the season.
But the film loses some of that magic when the Top Elf is demoted and moves to a city to help a shady toy creator make some new toys. Lithgow hams it up like crazy.
It's around this part where we begin to see this sub plot about a homeless boy Santa befriends. He tells Santa he has no family, no home, no money and no food...and Santa basically leaves him behind only to return a year later to bring him a wooden figurine??? This just angered me. You set up the whole first half that Santa is this great man who loves all kids and making them happy, but he doesn't do anything to help the boy to NOT be a bum?
Add in some really awful effects, the flying letters looked animated even!
It's decent but nothing I'd ever watch again. And the message to kids that we don't need to help the homeless is just an awful part of this movie.