In Review: Santa Claus The Movie (4K Blu Ray)

Seeing Is Believing
Santa

Synopsis: The legend of Santa Claus is put in jeopardy when an unscrupulous toy manufacturer attempts to take over Christmas.

 

The Story

Essentially an origin story for Santa Claus. The film tells of how Santa Claus and his wife came to be the world’s biggest gift-givers every 24th of December. Opening up with Santa and his wife delivering toys to children within his native land. A snowstorm hits and stops Santa his wife and their two reindeer in their tracks. Thankfully, some Elves have been keeping an eye on old Santa and allow him to launch his operation worldwide as part of the deal. Santa and his wife are made immortal. Years pass and as demand gets higher and Christmas becomes more commercialized Santa and his Elves struggle to keep pace with progress. So it is decided that one of the Elves should be made a personal assistant to the big red one. Of course, this is where the trouble begins as Patch. Santa’s favorite Elf comes up with a method of mass-producing toys, but things go wrong and Patch leaves for New York thinking that he is no longer loved and sets out to prove his worth.

That is pretty much the set up for perhaps one of the most ambitious films of its time.

 

Extras

This newly remastered and upscaled version of the film includes an hour-long documentary shot in 1985, which tells you how the film was made by taking you through pretty much every department of movie production. It features interviews with the film’s director Jeannot Szwarc as well as a brief glimpse of famed composer Henry Mancini working on the film’s brilliant soundtrack.

This new 4K edition also features a behind-the-scenes look at the shooting of the press conference scene in which B.Z. and Patch announce their plans for the candy canes.

Adding further to the package is a newly filmed interview with actor Judy Cornwell who played Mrs. Claus.

 

Overall

At the time of its release Santa Claus The Movie bombed at the box office and proved a critical failure for producer Ilya Salkind whose producing career had taken a turn for the worse after critical failures with Superman III and Supergirl. In a lot of ways, this was the Salkind’s last chance at trying to regain some of the plaudits that they’d rightly earned for their work on Superman The Movie and Superman II.

At a run time of 2 hours. The film’s pacing is perhaps a tad bogged down with the origin story at the start as it takes the movie a good hour to get to the crux of the main story, which is very much focused on Patch being taken advantage of by B.Z. Toys and Santa’s mission to save him and of course save Christmas. That said though I enjoyed the origin stuff at the beginning, which perhaps puts me in the minority. But nothing new there.

The film features some brilliant performances from all its main cast. David Huddleston comes across as a fantastic embodiment of Father Christmas and projects the warmth and playfulness of the legendary figure. The late Dudley Moore is as warm and charming as you’d expect as the misguided Elf Patch. While Judy Cornwell comes across as well as Mrs. Claus.

The film also includes a few regulars from the old British Sit-Com It Ain’t Half Hot Mum in the forms of Melvyn Hayes, Don Estelle, and we also get a cameo from the legendary Burgess Meredith as a rather ancient elf. Of course, the real star of this movie when it comes to out-and-out villainy is a rather young John Lithgow who plays the movie’s big bad brilliantly. Of course, he’d later go on to impress in movies like Cliffhanger and Raising Cain.

Indeed this film has as many fans as it does detracters and this 4K version is the best-looking version of the movie to date and remains as entertaining and as fun as ever. It also features perhaps the best Santa’s Sleigh effects ever seen and they still hold up now.

 

Santa Claus The Movie 4K Blu-Ray is available to buy now at Amazon or any other good retailer. It’s well worth picking up if you are a fan of the film and looking for some nostalgia for your Christmas celebrations.

8.8
Santa Claus The Movie (4K Blu Ray)
  • Packaging and Artwork
    9.8
  • Story
    8.6
  • Blu Ray Extras
    8.0

Ian Cullen is the founder of scifipulse.net and has been a fan of science fiction and fantasy from birth. In the past few years he has written for 'Star Trek' Magazine as well as interviewed numerous comics writers, television producers and actors for the SFP-NOW podcast at: www.scifipulseradio.com When he is not writing for scifipulse.net Ian enjoys playing his guitar, studying music, watching movies and reading his comics. Ian is both the founder and owner of scifipulse.net You can contact ian at: ian@scifipulse.net
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