The Santa Clause-REVIEW

Only in the 90s could you market a movie about killing a man, wearing his clothes, and then proceeding to assume his identity and takeover his business operations for kids. Maybe the Disney execs back then were on a bit of that snow Tim Allen was peddling back in the 70s, but somehow they were able to turn it into a film that many regard as a Christmas classic.

Most likely birthed because of a pun, The Santa Clause stars Tim Allen as Scott Calvin, a father going through a divorce who, as bluntly stated above, accidentally kills Santa Claus by scaring him into falling off his roof. When Scott and his young son Charley investigate, they find a note instructing Scott to put on Santa’s clothes and take over his duties for the night. Scott reluctantly agrees at the behest of his son, and the two spend the night delivering presents around the town. When they arrive at the North Pole, Scott is informed by the elves of the “Santa Clause”, which states that if something were to happen to the previous Santa, whoever dons his uniform would become the new Santa. Now Scott must come to terms with becoming Santa Claus as he tries to preserve his relationship with his son.

Eric Lloyd as Charlie Calvin (left) and Tim Allen as Scott Calvin/Santa Claus (right)

Such a bizarre premise shouldn’t work for a kids movie, yet the movie surprisingly handles it in a semi-believable and entertaining way. Tim Allen gives a somewhat charming performance as Scott Calvin, a father trying to keep his son in his life through a divorce. Celebrating Christmas and believing in Santa are the last things on his mind, yet it takes being hoodwinked into the job of Santa Claus to teach him the reason for the season. There really isn’t much more to it than that. The film is fairly straightforward and doesn’t offer too many surprises or interesting takes, yet it remains fairly harmless in its execution.

The film is very 90s, complete with slapstick, comedic sound cues and sly adult innuendo jokes. While I have some nostalgia for these types of movies, the humor didn’t always work for me. Though I can still appreciate the film for its North Pole set designs and additions to the Santa Claus lore, I couldn’t help but feel a little disappointed upon revisiting this film as an adult. There’s not a lot of heart as I expected there to be, with most of the film really relying on the premise rather than the characters. Sure, it has some heartwarming family moments, but there’s not a whole lot to talk about here past that, as the film is mostly void of any original or meaningful message. Not to say that every movie needs something like this, but for a film aimed towards entertaining children I found it to be a bit lacking in that department. Despite its shortcomings, I still got a bit on enjoyment out of it, though not nearly as much as when I was younger.

For a film about divorce, murder and the unyielding binds of capitalism, kids are still sure to be entertained by the wacky antics and colorful holiday visuals. Most adults looking to revisit the film may find similar enjoyment, but I for one believe there are much more creative and thoughtful films out there. While this film isn’t necessarily terrible, it has begun to feel more like a film to throw on in the background to set your house’s mood towards Christmas, rather than a film you actively enjoy watching. Even with its flaws I still consider the film a classic that I wouldn’t mind catching at least once during the season.

Also, my fiancee had informed me that she thought Bernard the Elf was super hot when she was younger. Not sure what to do with that.

Rating

(out of a possible 5 Santa hats)

Clausmopolitan

The cosmopolitan is a very popular drink for those that want to enjoy a martini but want its flavor to be a little bit more fruity than rubbing alcohol. Known for its refreshing cranberry and tart lime flavors, the “cosmo” is a certified crowd pleaser, and now it’s getting a holiday makeover in the form of the Clausmopolitan! For this cocktail we’ll be using a citrus vodka and a few fresh cranberries to really elevate the citrus notes of the drink, along with a crushed peppermint rim that adds a welcoming minty freshness in taste and aroma with every sip!

Ingredients

  • 2oz citrus vodka
  • 3oz cranberry juice
  • 1/2oz fresh lime juice
  • 1/2oz triple sec
  • Rim: Peppermint
  • Garnish: Cranberries

Instructions

  1. In a sealed bag, finely crush a few peppermints with either a mallet or rolling pin.
  2. Wet the rim of a martini glass with a lime wedge, then coat the rim in crushed peppermint. Store the glass in the fridge for later.
  3. Shake your vodka, cranberry juice, lime juice and triple sec with ice.
  4. Strain cocktail into prepared glass.
  5. Garnish with a few cranberries.

Video

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