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I don't know what's worse: Watching another sequel to a concept that really didn't warrant one in the first place, or the fact that I'm watching another movie with Martin Short; something I swore that I'd never do again. I appreciate his dubious comedic legacy, but the man (like Robin Williams) is a now a surefire cure for the giggles. Whenever he's on screen I instantly stop laughing because he plays himself where ever he is, whatever he's starring in. I'm still wondering why we even needed this movie in the first place. We went from an "Aww, so sweet" first film, to a "Now they're pushing me" sequel, right down to a third film that's really unnecessary.
I could rely on the cop out that: "hey, it's not for adults, it's for the kids," but kids are stupid, and my duty is to review this on my own perspective. Somewhere down the line we'll surely be seeing a prequel with Bryan Cranston or Harland Williams pre-Allen, and the franchise will stagger on. Until then we have The Santa Clause 3, another movie that explores the numerous guidelines along the hidden fine printing on that rotten little card given by the head elf that purports to give us a reason to watch this. Now we find Scott Calvin who is well within his Santa boots wed to bland love interest Carol who is on the verge of birth; which is setting us up for another sequel before the twenty minute mark, no less.
Why we have to watch a film through her eyes, no one is sure, but then again you don't question a film like this. Like that dog pile on the road, it's just there and it stinks. Now with Carol pregnant, this brings about a whole slew of questions inquisitive children this is targeted toward will certainly be asking. So...Santa and Carol had sex? How? Does Santa have sex? When did they have sex?
And if it's possible, the third sequel takes a further dip into infancy with Frost being put on trial for freezing most of the world by fantasy figures. As Scott, Allen really needs no work; he plays himself, he whines about the North Pole and he frets over his upcoming Claus kid, all the while Judge Reinhold, Eric Lloyd, and Spencer Breslin obligate their contractual agreement and take a payday, as the film turns over to Short and his villainous Frost.
Frost attempts to take the North Pole for himself and build his own holiday, and the film really just relies on a steady stream of physical comedy, weak gags, and a brutally blatant plot device featuring that dang snow globe that can inexplicably turn into a time machine. If Scott wishes he weren't Santa Claus, it will be done. Now Frost has his weapon to use for his take over, and I roll my eyes. You have to wonder why all of this wasn't explained to Scott in the first movie; but then, he probably wouldn't have signed on to the role if it was, so there's a conundrum.
I ramble, forgive me. Santa Clause 3 isn't as bad as the second film, but by god there's the distinct scent of a one note story being stretched into a ninety minute yawn fest that only the most complacent kids will enjoy. Even with the presence of another second city alumni: Alan Alda, and Ann Margaret, I just couldn't enjoy all the plot devices that were brought up from seemingly nowhere. Frost appears suddenly, suddenly wants his own holiday (even with winter essentially being his time), suddenly there's another guideline in his card, suddenly the snow globe can undo Scott as Santa, and suddenly we have an episode of “Everybody Loves Raymond” as Scott contends with his new in-laws, and flubs caused by Frost.
A jaded man like me can still find joy in a great Christmas movie, but that's the problem, The Santa Clause 3 isn't a great Christmas movie.
The disc for The Santa Clause 3 gives viewers the option of a full screen or widescreen presentation, and the DVD will not disappoint. After many fun previews to upcoming Disney properties, The Santa Clause 3 looks and sounds absolutely great.
“Blooper Reel” is of course, the blooper reel, a two minute featurette that’s really not very entertaining because it’s really just a reel of riffing between Short and Allen who try to get through scenes without laughing. And there’s of course “Music & More” which is comprised of Christmas Carol-Oke which allows viewers to sing along to Christmas carols, and a music video from Ally & AJ singing “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year.” Who are Ally & AJ? Seriously, I’m asking. “Backstage Disney” is a series of featurettes on The Santa Clause 3 comprised of the alternate opening which is slightly different from the original because it’s more of an excuse to give Abigail Breslin a bigger role.
“Jack Frost & Mrs. Claus: A New Look” is a technical featurette on the new modern look for the title characters which explains turning Frost from an impish troublemaker to a suit donning shark. “The New Comedians” is another four minute feature with more on-set riffing between Allen and Short with interviews from the crew on the riffing between Allen and Short, and repetition is the key here. “Creating Movie Magic” is the typical special effects documentary on the pretty mediocre special effects that really never enhanced the movie as much as the crew probably hoped for. It’s just too bad they’re only given three minutes. “The New Comedians” dares to be repetitive as it shows even more riffing from Allen and Short while the cast is interviewed on the riffing between Allen and short.
For the Audio Commentary director Lembeck discusses The Santa Clause 3 but I just couldn’t stand it long enough to listen beyond thirty minutes. Lembeck is obviously enthusiastic about the movie and makes no denial about the film’s purpose. It would have been more entertaining to hear Allen talk with him.
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