The Christmas Chronicles is a refresher from other cliche Christmas movies


Small, sparkling, shining lights on the tree, piping hot chocolate on the counter, and the movie Christmas Chronicle playing on the TV. A perfect recipe for a perfect Christmas.

While watching The Christmas Chronicles, I laughed, I smiled, and I cried. The movie was way better than I expected, and I quickly became engrossed into the plot that I thought would bore me.

The Christmas Chronicles follows a sister and brother throughout their chaotic adventures during Christmas Eve night. The Pierce siblings, Teddy and Kate, plan to spot Santa Claus during the late hours of the night. Teddy and Kate do just that, but far more. They miraculously find themselves in Santa’s sleigh, which inconveniently breaks later on. Feeling guilty for breaking Santa’s sleigh, Teddy and Kate help Santa save Christmas. Not only do they have to fix the sleigh, but they also have to find Santa’s fluffy, red hat and his never-ending bag of presents as well. The intrepid trio finds themselves in jail, almost dead, and delivering presents all in one night.

Kate (Darby Camp) comes off as much older than a 10-year-old, which she plays in the movie. In the beginning, she is found cursing, and her mature personality portrays her as much older. Teddy (Judah Lewis), Kate’s older teenage brother, portrayed his character very well by having a standoff attitude. Kate is innocent whereas Teddy makes bad decisions, which truly describe sibling relationships correctly.

Adding to their duo, Santa Claus (Kurt Russell) is a new face from the familiar Santa Claus we see on billboards. Instead of snow-white hair and a bulging stomach, Russell has grey-white hair, is fairly thin, and is younger than the Santa you would expect. Santa’s overly nice and cheerful personality is lost at some points throughout the movie, and a snarky and snippy attitude is replaced with it. The different attitude loses some of the holiday cheer that pours from the movie. At first sight, his appearance is shocking, leaving the audience asking what happened to the Santa they know and love. Although, throughout the movie his personality captured my heart and transformed towards the end, making me smile like I do on Christmas Day.

Although the actors didn’t quite fit their characters, the screenplay was surprisingly amazing. Kate being as young as she is in the movie radiates holiday cheer in a discreet way. The growing connection between Teddy and Kate capture the viewer’s attention. The way Russell portrays Santa is refreshing and unique from the other cliche movies. The actors did a great job making the story about much more than an adventure with Santa Claus. The movie tactfully shows that the true meaning of Christmas is about family and the people you spend it with.

For example, before the night is over, Teddy and Kate share a heartfelt moment that reaches out and touches the viewer’s hearts leaving them with tear-filled eyes. As Teddy describes what he wanted for Christmas, tears fall from his face, revealing that even a teenager boy can become emotional at times. The scene demonstrates how the eventful night is showing Teddy the true meaning of Christmas, but also bringing him close to his drifting sister.

Due to Santa being a main character in the movie, special effects were very common. While Santa flew from house to house transforming to red dust, the special effects were realistic. The reindeer seemed like real animals, and while Santa’s sleigh flew through the sky, I didn’t second guess or find anything hard to believe—I was glued to the screen.

The movie did remind me of the ending of Elf, but the plot and the way The Christmas Chronicles was acted out separated this movie from all the other cliche Christmas filled movies that are released around the holiday season.

Since The Christmas Chronicles is a 2018 Netflix original film, I wasn’t expecting much; however, I received something that touched my heart and really captured my full attention. The producers Chris Columbus, Michael Barnathan, and David Guggenheim, and director Clay Kaytis created a unique film that was very entertaining to watch.

After all the cliche Christmas movies I have watched, this film is a refresher from all of the others. It ranks as one of my favorites, leaving my heart touched and my holiday spirit higher than ever.