|Genre: Comedy and Holiday |
|Running Time: 107 min. |
|Release Date: 11/09/2007 (Wide) |
MPAA Rating: PG for Mild language and some rude humor
Distributor: Warner Bros. Pictures Distribution
Fred Claus has lived his entire life in his brother's very large shadow. Fred tried, but could hardly live up to the example set by the younger Nicholas, who was just a perfect, well, saint. True to form, Nicholas grew up to be the model of giving, while Fred became the polar opposite: a fast-talking repo man who's run out of luck and money. Over Mrs. Claus' objections, Nicholas agrees to help his brother on one condition: that he come to the North Pole and earn the money he needs by working in Santa's Toy Shop. The trouble is that Fred isn't exactly elf material and, with Christmas fast approaching, Fred could jeopardize the jolliest holiday of the year.
It wouldnít be Christmas without another new holiday comedy and this yearís offering of note is Fred Claus. The film presents a somewhat new twist on the St. Nicholas story where Santa struggles to maintain his high spirit even when his brother, Fred, comes to visit. I struggled with some of the set-up and slow pace early on, but as is to be expected of any Christmas movie worth its salt, it comes on strong at the end leaving the audience feeling good and maybe a little enlightened. There are a few nice special effects and the character interaction of Paul Giamatti and Vince Vaughn is pretty funny but donít expect to see this one show up in any of the award nominations. I saw very little of that which seems to make the Academy or other presenters take notice although fathers that take their children will most surely notice Charlene (Elizabeth Banks) and Wanda (Rachel Weisz). But I digress.
I didnít go to see Fred Claus because I was expecting a cinematic masterpiece. I went on this Christmas Eve because I thought it might get me back in the Christmas spirit after weeks of shopping, year end work pressures and holiday parties. And as I walked out with a smile on my face I realized it had done just that.Grade: C+
12/24/2007 - Bob Stanza