This is pseudo-cynical comedy, however, not social satire. All the sharp corners are smoothed over and what's left is little more than a big screen sitcom. Just when you're about to dismiss Affleck and his over-the-top demeanor, the story starts to click. A movie I thought I was going to hate turned into a nice little treat. But I still can't figure out why they chose to open a Christmas picture two months ahead of the season it celebrates, since, by the end, it becomes a story with real Christmas spirit. For Christmas to be any source of laughs, many audience members will need to move past their fear of Ben Affleck. Yuletide cheer gets a kick in the shins with this funny but forced cinematic Christmas present. There are a few amusing moments, helped by subdued performances from Affleck and Gandolfini, but this is no "Bad Santa" despite its obvious ambition to play similar holiday tricks. As light, fluffy, cockle-warming holiday entertainment, this thing is pretty sweet.
VERDICT: "In The Zone" - [Mixed Reaction] These kinds of movies are usually movies that had some good things, but some bad things kept it from being amazing. This rating says buy an ex-rental or a cheap price of the DVD to own. If you consider cinema, ask for people's opinion on the film. (Films that are rated 2.5 or 3 stars)