Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr
Empire
Trending On Empire
Star Wars: The Force Awakens Teaser Trailer
The Farewell To Middle-earth Issue
Review Of The Year 2014
Subscribe: Get 12 Issues For £25
Buy the perfect Christmas present this year
Farewell To Middle-earth
Full details of our Peter Jackson-edited issue
Reviews
STAR RATINGS EXPLAINED
Unmissable 5 Stars
Excellent 4 Stars
Good 3 Stars
Poor 2 Stars
Tragic 1 Star

FILM DETAILS
Certificate
PG
Cast
Tim Allen
Eric Lloyd
Judge Reinhold.
Directors
John Pasquin.
Screenwriters
Steve Rudnick
Leo Benvenuti.
Running Time
98 minutes

LATEST FILM REVIEWS
Annie
2 Star Empire Rating
Theory Of Everything, The
4 Star Empire Rating
Bringing Tibet Home
3 Star Empire Rating
Enemy
4 Star Empire Rating
Kon-Tiki
4 Star Empire Rating



5 STAR REVIEWS
Leviathan
5 Star Empire Rating
Le Jour Se Lève
5 Star Empire Rating
Tony Benn: Will And Testament
5 Star Empire Rating
Nightcrawler
5 Star Empire Rating
Babadook, The
5 Star Empire Rating

The Santa Clause


submit to reddit


Review
Let's be frank, Americans sometimes get it really wrong. The case in point, last Christmas two competing Santa movies hit the snowy US streets. The first, Miracle On 34th Street, was a beautifully performed, unpretentious, genuinely touching ode about believing in the guy in red. It rustled up less business than the Sinclair C5. The second, The Santa Clause, was a bloated, wretched concept comedy about a dysfunctional dad donning suit and hat, and taking on the mantle of the big guy body and, before long, soul. Hey presto, it was a hit the size of Greenland.


Allen (from TV's Home Improvement) is the dad in question. He's cynical. He's corporate. He can't communicate with his kid. And he really can't stand his ex-wife's new man - psychiatrist Judge Reinhold complete with big sweaters. Allen's schtick is a jabbermouth know-it-all, and he's fine while he can poke fun at Reinhold, and quip hard on the Crimbo front, but - and here's the rub - there's a whole heap of second-rate sentiment waiting to send him flying.


Santa - the real Santa - lands on his roof, Allen cries foul, Santa topples, pops his boots, and at the behest of a mysterious contractual clause, and his squealing son, Allen takes a new career direction involving reindeer and a bottomless sack. This allows Allen to snap at ungrateful kids and morph down chimneys, but once the smirking comedian starts actually transforming into Santa, the film turns into a ghastly seasonal take on Mrs. Doubtfire.


There's elves, Lapland, toy factories and sleighs but none of it connects. The film drops from obvious comedy into a ready melt slush which no amount of make-up and special effects can rescue. No doubt, Clause 2 is on the Disney Christmas wish list this year, and, no doubt, Allen is a huge star in the making. Thankfully, though, this Santa Clause is just for Christmas, not for life.




Reviewed by

Write Your Review
To write your review please login or register.

Your Reviews

Average user rating for The Santa Clause
Empire Star Rating

It's a bit of Christmas fun ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Bezerker at 23:18, 08 December 2008 | Report This Post


It's a bit of Christmas fun ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Bezerker at 23:18, 08 December 2008 | Report This Post


It's a bit of Christmas fun ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Bezerker at 23:18, 08 December 2008 | Report This Post


It's a bit of Christmas fun ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by Bezerker at 23:17, 08 December 2008 | Report This Post


I thought it was enjoyable but only at christmas ... More

Empire User Rating

Posted by apbircham at 20:57, 07 October 2007 | Report This Post


RE: The Santa Clause

Any recommendation film good for chrismass?? -- London to Brighton http://www.l2b-themovie.co.uk ... More

Posted by lovebhadz at 01:39, 11 December 2006 | Report This Post


SUBSCRIPTION OFFERS

SAVE UP TO 69% GET 12 ISSUES FOR ONLY £25
Get the best seat in the house by subscribing to the world's biggest movie magazine today. Save up to 69% and every month you'll get exclusive subscriber-only covers, access to the biggest stars and the best news, reviews and behind-the-scenes reports straight from the set. Click here to find the perfect offer for you


CURRENT HIGHLIGHTS
Watch: Night At The Museum's Cast Share Their Favourite Robin Williams Performance
Ben Stiller, Owen Wilson and Ben Kingsley pay tribute to the actor

Watch: Jack O'Connell And Luke Treadaway Talk Unbroken
On POWs, panto and how to name your bomber

Review Of 2014: The 15 Best Cameos Of The Year
Our favourite one-scene movie-stealers

8 Things You Can Learn From The BFI's Star Wars Exhibition
The original crawl, a 'grotesque' villain and a very different princess

Review Of The Year: 40 Worst Posters Of 2014
One-sheets that you'd rather not have on your wall

Hobbit Q&As: Ian McKellen On Finally Saying Goodbye And Farewell To Gandalf The Grey
Read our exclusive Hobbit: The Battle Of The Five Armies interviews

Review Of 2014: The Best TV Moments Of The Year
We celebrate the small screen's biggest scenes

Subscribe to Empire magazine
Get 12 Issues Of Empire For Only £25!

Get exclusive subscriber-only covers each month!

Subscribe today

Subscribe to Empire iPad edition
Get The Empire iPad Edition Today

Subscribe and save maney on annual digital subscription

Subscribe today
Buy single issues

Get 12 issues of Empire for just £25!
Get exclusive subscriber-only covers each month Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire iPad Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  iPad  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Editorial Complaints  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)