I was pretty stumped when I sat down to watch this film and was met with the lovechild of Merlin and Gandalf spouting some “father-son” crap whilst a reindeer flies overhead. Does it get any more realistic as the film goes on? Well no, not really. Welcome to the world where Kelsey Grammar plays Nick St Nicholas, the (secret, somehow) heir to Santa. He’s also “the most eligible bachelor in Miami”- I shit you not. Two different women say this. TWO!

The film was produced by Grammar’s then wife, Camille of Real Housewives fame. No bias.

Known for his generosity and selflessness, Nick refuses to become Santa because he’s too busy enjoying having a big house and a weathergirl girlfriend (weathergirlfriend). His unbridled kindness to everybody triggers his remark about his Indian chef: “can she make anything without putting curry in it?” He also swerves wildly across sides of the road in his Ferrari (complete with the totally non-idiotic license plate “5LE1GH”) as he’s an all-round, “most eligible bachelor in Miami” kinda guy.

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ELIGIBLE

Grammar manages to be terrifying for the kids with his “Ho Ho Hargh”s to the extent that even he’s realised something’s up (as evidenced by his noteworthy delivery on the line, “this is some baaaaaaad mojo”). The whole Santa plot itself is very easily ignored in this film about an heir who’s clearly too dumb to notice that an obvious scam is being run with his name plastered all over it. He only twigs in jail when a thug overhears what happened to him and infers so much that Nick should clearly have realised. Thank God for that thug, because presumably Santa would be doing five years for fraud otherwise. Regular Santa (Nick’s dad) is pretty sad to watch too: losing his powers, likening a lack of flying sleigh to erectile dysfunction- does this mean his member is magical? Is that something any of us ever thought we might think about Santa? I’ll be honest, I feel ill just typing that.

There’s so much not to be taken seriously in this film which takes itself pretty seriously. Who delivers an emotional speech about a lack of father-son development and then proposes to a woman after a week? Also, would Hilda from Ugly Betty really feel comfortable saying, “oh Latina women, we all look the same”? Minorities say the darnedest things. Points for dedication to Grammar being so damned eligible, minus points for laughable racial stereotypes.

Rating: Ho Ho/Ho Ho Ho.

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