Santa and the Ice Cream Bunny (1972)

G   |    |  Family, Fantasy

Santa and the Ice Cream Bunny (1972) Poster

When Santa's sleigh gets stuck in Florida, he tells a group of kids the story of Thumbelina.


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Cast & Crew

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Richard Winer


Hans Christian Andersen (fairy tale: "Thumbelina")

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4 April 2004 | tweber-4
Video & Theme Park Details
SANTA AND THE ICE CREAM BUNNY - first thought: What the ????

Found this video for rental at Family Video at 76th & National in Milwaukee this week and it sounded so atrociously awful and ridiculous I just HAD to rent it. Never heard of this movie before... It indeed was interesting viewing of one of the worst movies EVER.

For those who are seeking this video, the copy I picked up says: copyright United Entertainment, Inc. United Home Video - 1987. Product #4006

So apparently this company acquired the rights to release this on tape.

Now the video box description mentions that Santa tells the children the story of Thumbelina, and segues into that movie...

But in the video on the tape, the structure of the film has been changed.

This video does contain THUMBELINA, but not as a "movie within a movie" as in the original version. Instead THUMBELINA and all the theme-park sequences that go with it are tacked on to the end of the "Santa and the Ice Cream Bunny" story.

So in this video, Santa begins to tell the story, and the picture fades to black. Then comes back from black and now Santa has finished telling the story... wrapping up with a an incoherent moral that sounds quite nonsensical considering the Thumbelina story had been excised from the body of the SICB film. Incidentally, the Santa and the Ice Cream Bunny portion of the film clocks in at about 30 minutes.

In watching the THUMBELINA film on the video at the end of the SICB story I was interested in finding out more about the Pirate's World Amusement Park in Dania, Florida. There is considerable footage of the theme park rides in the film, and this movie could be looked at as a historical film/video document of one of Florida's Lost Roadside Attractions. Perhaps it is one of the only motion-picture visual records remaining of what that park was like. I thought the Steeplechase Ride looked cool but would not pass muster today considering safety regulations.

Pirate's World was successful enough in its early days, but the opening of Walt Disney World in 1971 was the beginning of the end for that theme park. By 1973 it was in bankruptcy and in 1975 it was closed.

I would not be surprised if SANTA AND THE ICE CREAM BUNNY, released in 1972, in some way contributed to the demise of Pirate's World.

This movie is so awful, it probably scared potential theme-park visitors away!!!

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