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Xmas: 'The Santa Clause' (1994) Dir. John Pasquin

Tim Allen, Eric Lloyd, Wendy Crewson, Judge Reinhold, David Krumholtz, Peter Boyle, Jayne Eastwood and Larry Brandenburg


Launching a popular festive franchise with star Tim Allen fresh from his TV and 'Toy Story' success, this became a solid Disney Christmas classic...

Workaholic Scott Calvin (Allen) is spending Christmas Eve with young son Charlie (Lloyd). That night they are woken by noise on the roof. Scott disturbs Santa Claus, causing him to fall, leaving only a set of rules and the red suit behind.

To satisfy Charlie, Scott goes along with Santa's rules. Scott starts a transformation where he gradually becomes the new Santa Claus, all while trying to ignore what is happening and focus on his corporate office job.

With Charlie trying to help him believe in the magic, Scott discovers the fate of Christmas rests on his new role and saving the season before it is too late, convincing everyone he really has become the true Santa Claus...

One of the better mainstream Christmas films to come our way, now 20 years old and still retaining that schmaltzy festive magic, but with a decent story that relies on character, heart and humour rather than truckloads of slapstick and cheap visuals.

Tim Allen surfing the peak of this TV and movie career comes across, to me, a little over-confident in his ability as being funnier than he actually is. While the script isn’t awful, it’s not that funny, but Allen gurns and quips and groans over his puns and silly actions that I think he feels is laugh out loud funny, but really it’s a little cheesy. But with a decent supporting cast with young Eric Lloyd, the always-passionate Judge Reinhold and likeable David Krumholtz as our Head Elf, Allen is in good form all round.

With most of the story set in the everyday community, it gives us lots of comical moments which see Allen slowly transform into our new Santa – this is fun to see and watch him and the people around him try to find explanations as to the increase in weight and excessive facial hair. 

With nothing offensive or crass, this is easy festive viewing for all the family with plenty of heart that centres on family, rather than just fantasy and adventure.

'The Santa Clause' is a Walt Disney Pictures production

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