Must Be Santa (1999)

TV Movie   |  G   |    |  Comedy, Drama, Fantasy

Must Be Santa (1999) Poster

Through a cosmic mix-up, a shiftless but good-hearted man is accidentally tagged to be the new Santa Claus after the old Santa dies. The gruff, no-nonsense manager of the North Pole is decidedly unhappy with the selection



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3 December 2007 | lastliberal
| Visually stunning and a bit unusual
I was tempted to give this only four stars, but I added a fifth because it was an unusual presentation.

The photography and visual effects are great and Brad Turner, who seems to have done a lot of Sci-Fi TV and Species III, did a good job directing, even if we didn't always know where it was going.

But, maybe that was Douglas Bowie's story, which was certainly an unusual approach to a Santa story. There was a lot of religious symbolism evident in the film. The whole idea of Santa being a "regular Joe" and Santa at the same time is reflective of the divinity of Jesus, a man/god thing. There was also a lot of redemption in the story. This was all framed with Christmas music that was more religious than secular.

Not only is the basic story unusual, but the idea of an Africa-American Santa (Arnold Pinnock), who falls in love with an angel (the lovely Deanna Milligan) is also different. Dabney Coleman was around to provide comic relief.

Miligan made this a pleasant experience even if it was so unusual that I could not completely enjoy it. Maybe they were afraid to push too hard with the elements that were taken from The Santa Clause.

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