Tuesday, December 23, 2008

25 Days: Elf

I must admit that I did laugh out plenty of times last night while watching Will Ferrell as Buddy in Elf.

Buddy is an orphan who climbs into Santa Claus' (Ed Asner) sack one Christmas Eve night and ends up at the North Pole.

Papa Elf (Bob Newhart) raises Buddy as his own - and as an elf - despite his huge size difference to the other elves.

After overhearing a few other elves speak about him being a human, Buddy sets out to New York City to find his birth father, Walter (James Caan).

Buddy, however, despite being about 30 years old still has the mind of a child and is constantly trying to spread Christmas cheer wherever he goes.

The only thing that convinces Walter that Buddy is his child is a blood test - and even then it appears that Buddy is more of a nuisance to him than a son. Walter's other son, Michael (Daniel Tay) is also neglected by his father - who is a bigshot children's book producer.

Buddy also falls for a girl who works at the Gimbels Department Store, Jovie (Zooey Deschanel) - and takes her out on his first ever date, and even gets his first ever kiss.

After interrupting a very important meeting that might cost Walter his job - Walter unleashes on Buddy and throws him out of his office. Buddy decides to leave and on his way sees that Santa's sleigh hs crashed in Central Park.

This is where things get sort of weird for me. I know that a movie only has a short amount of time to tell a story, but when Michael comes to get his father to come help find Buddy - it was an awfully quick turn around for Walter. I mean this man has been married to his job for years, including blowing up at Buddy not a few hours before - and all of a sudden he is a great family man, I don't buy it.

The story itself was rather interesting - Ferrell did a great job as Buddy and I really enjoyed Deschanel as Jovie. I think she is a really underrated actress.

I wasn't as thrilled with Caan's performance but I guess he was going for a Scrooge-like character that all of a sudden catches the Christmas spirit.

A decent film that one can watch each Christmas - but doesn't truly leave a lasting impression.


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