Archive for the ‘The Santa Clause’ Category

Silver Screen Review – The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause

December 8, 2006

by Blake

Originally posted December 8, 2006.

Jack Frost is on his way to the North Pole and is serving up plenty of holiday fun in the newest installment in The Santa Clause movie series, The Escape Clause.

To catch you up to speed on the last two clauses, the first clause in 1994 allowed regular father Scott Calvin (Tim Allen) to become Santa. The second clause in 2002 proposed Scott, now Santa, to become married (the “Mrs. Clause”). This time, the “escape clause” refers to the current Santa wishing he had never become Santa at all, allowing anyone to fill his place. That’s where Jack Frost (Martin Short) plays in to things.

All the characters from the original two clauses return, with the exception of Bernard (David Krumholtz), Santa’s number-one elf. The film provides no explanation of why Bernard left or what happened to him. All we know is that Curtis (Spencer Breslin), previously titled number-two elf, is now number-one.

Besides that, all of the other characters are back including Scott’s son Charlie (Eric Lloyd), Mrs. Claus a.k.a. Carol (Elizabeth Mitchell), Scott’s ex-wife Laura (Wendy Crewson), Laura’s current husband psychologist Neil (Judge Reinhold), Charlie’s half-sister Lucy (Liliana Mumy), and all of the legendary holiday figures such as Easter Bunny, Mother Nature, Cupid, and others. Those repeatedly-gassy computer-generated reindeer also unfortunately return, as well.

The film’s plot surrounds Jack Frost trying to upstage Santa and take over Christmas while Carol struggles to combine her new life as Mrs. Claus with her need to be with old family and friends she left behind (such as newcomers Alan Arkin and Ann-Margret, who play Carol’s parents).

The movie mainly takes place in the North Pole, with not much happening outside of the Pole’s berm. That’s satisfactory for a little bit, but after a while the film seemed to become somewhat like a television series episode and not much like a movie, with nothing really happening aside from sequence after sequence of problems in the North Pole. Once the plot finally progressed after about 50 minutes of postponement and we were finally taken out into the rest of the world, the movie began to get favorable.

Several characters that come to mind in adding enjoyable moments during dull North Pole scenes include the relaxed Neil, the agitated Sandman, the delusional father of Mrs. Claus, and the villainous Jack Frost. As for the reindeer, their overused gas is just getting annoying at this point.

Overall, The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause will provide families with laughs, emotional moments, and a generally enjoyable movie experience. The movie’s second half is much better than its first, and once the film arrives at that point there’s not much not to like. Although the film was released a little early to be a Christmas movie (it debuted on November 3, 2006), by now I think we’re all ready for a little Christmas excitement.

Besides, what’s a better ingredient for Christmas merriment than the magic of Disney with the wonders of the holidays?

How do I rank The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause? (Bolded is my choice.)
Utterly Repulsive
Not Good
Very Good

The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause will most likely please: Preschoolers (ages 3-4) – Kids (ages 5-8)

by Blake; originally posted December 8, 2006. All images (C) Disney.