Despite its efforts, Santa Girl still toes the line of basic and mediocre


Unless you watch a classic Christmas movie, the cliche plot is almost a given. For that reason, I wasn’t at all surprised when Santa Girl was cheesy and predictable. 

Cassandra Claus is to take over the family business and delivers toys and joy to kids all over the world. It is her duty just as much as it is her duty to marry someone she has never met: Jack Frost Junior. This merger means the world to both families, but Cassie just wants to travel the real world and experience everything she can. The solution? One semester at college.

Needless to say, this movie focuses on a love triangle while Cassie is at college. Among Cassie’s awkward encounters and laughable cluelessness, she meets and grows close to two boys, the rich frat boy J.R. (Joshua Cody) and the poor but intelligent boy from a troubled past, Sam. 

Though the overall plot was predictable, some points along the arc did catch me pleasantly off-guard. For example, she had cute moments with each of the guys she was friends with so as to prolong the audience’s confusion on which boy to root for. Moreover, Cassie had plenty of social blunders to make the rom-com entertaining and as realistic as a story about Santa’s daughter can be. 

Though I’m a sucker for a cute plot no matter how cheesy, the script itself was distracting. The writers clearly wanted the dialogue to flow naturally and casually, so they tossed in some colloquialisms that the actors blundered through.

For the record, that’s on the writers, not the actors. The script obviously hindered their ability to authentically portray emotion at times, and yet, they all persevered gracefully. Poor Devon Werkheiser (Sam) and Jennifer Stone (Cassie) took the brunt of the lousy script. 

Despite this, Stone, in particular, did a wonderful job playing the wide-eyed, joyful Cassie. At times, I felt like I was a kid again watching Stone play Harper Finkle in Wizards of Waverly Place. The quirky similarities between the two characters made Stone the perfect choice to portray Cassie.

While she was great at being quirky, Stone also excellently showed the more emotional side to Cassie. Her genuine emotion not only made the audience feel connected to Cassie, but she also gave her co-stars something to feed off of, specifically Werkheiser. For every emotion Stone pushed towards him through Cassie, he answered through Sam just as strong and gracefully. 

Furthermore, two other standout roles in Santa Girl are McKayla Whip as Pep the Elf and Hank Stone as Jack Frost. While they played polar opposite characters, they each fit the role perfectly. Whips was bouncing and excitable while Stone was eerie and aggressive. 

However, the one part of the movie that is beyond redemption is the animation. Although magic fit with the plot, its execution was quite poor.  Everything about the animation seemed low-budget and overly fakeso much so that it was a little distracting. 

Altogether, Santa Girl was mediocre. It gave me the warm and fuzzy feeling I was looking for as well as a healthy dose of Christmas cheer; however, it’s hard to get past its shoddy production.