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Annie Claus is Coming to Town (2011)


Part of the Christmas line-up last year, this darling piece of film work has a cute factor that is off the charts, bordering on ridiculous but also wants to remind us that Christmas is a time to believe in miracles and happiness is a state of being.  

For generations when a Claus comes of age, they have a rite of passage they are given should they chose to take it.  This year, Santa’s daughter, Annie (Maria Thayer) is thrilled to pieces to be taking her sabbatical. Fate choses where it will be and by Christmas, after seeing what is out in the world, Annie will have to choose if she will return to run the family business. A romantic, she has visions of meeting her own prince charming much the same way her mother did but her arrival in L.A. is less than what she expected… until she meets Dean (Ryan Bittle). Falling easily under his spell, Annie becomes enchanted with him and makes friends with the hotel owner, Lucy (Vivica A. Fox) and her young daughter, Mia. But the part of her that is homesick leads her to a struggling toy shop and its owner (Sam Page), and Annie’s decision becomes more complicated.  

Believe it or not… I actually enjoyed this movie. (Don’t judge me.) Santa’s children are often used as the basis of a story which makes this not all that inventive, and still I actually found myself enjoying this one more than I gave it credit for. It has more pizzazz than similar scenarios from the past – and a cuter leading man to boot. *wink* Many of the things that compile to make this movie work is infectious plus there is plenty of festive cheer to please anyone, and the personality of Annie was quite possibly “perfect.” Her character is enough of a naïve miss to possibly annoy any potential viewer but I found her darling. She was a pleasant mixture of innocence and smart; her spirit touched each of the people she befriended and I appreciated her attitude towards life. So often we forget that life can be what we make of it. Sure, there are plenty of things that happen beyond our control but we are also able to decide how that affects our outlook and though none of us are probably quite as chipper as Annie, it’s our attitude that determines most outcomes. Between Lucy (who was hilarious) and her “mini-me” daughter, Mia (she has some acting talent – what a personality!), and Annie and Ted’s scenes, the characters are what put the sparkle in this film – the poor dears really have nothing else productive with which to work with!  

Film work is pretty with strings of lights in nearly every frame. At least one error caught my eye in a reversal of events in one sequence of scenes but for the most part, Annie’s journey is festooned with holiday cheer on every corner. The script is subpar with uses of names where there needs to be none and some sappy declarations. Thrown into the mix is an “evil” plot to take over Santa’s village and some mushy romantics but the story also uses some surprising twists that I anticipated a different outcome to. Annie’s styling didn’t always pair well together but I did love her pretty, vintage dresses and cozy sweaters though the poor thing spent most the movie looking too pale for her own good – thanks to her red hair. Lacking in too many areas to be thought clever, this story of how Santa’s daughter found love is a keeper in my book. It has wholesome ideals and despite an attempt at an ambiguous ending, a great set of supporting characters.  

(What to know: A character easily manipulates another. Tweens tease and belittle class mates.)
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Rissi
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8 comments:

  1. Oh don't hate me Rissi....but I couldn't stand this one =P I love cheesy....but this was almost too much so. When my dad and I watched it (believe it or not, he likes Hallmark movies even more than my mom) we laughed the whole way through it! And more in a shaking our heads kind of way

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    1. I could NEVER hate you (Like ever. :D), Ella, so perish that thought!

      Funny you should mention not liking this one because as I was watching it, I thought I remembered you having talked about it last year. Honestly, I was not expecting to like it as well as I did but it was quite cute and will probably be one of my favorites of this year (since I watch the movies a year behind). Yes, it was sappy but I liked that there wasn't a last-minute chase to the airport (how many films have done that!?) between Annie and her true love among other things.

      My dad watches some of these but sometimes I'd rather he didn't because usually he's shouting at the character's telling them to quit making silly choices - and he often remarks on the cheesy nature of them too. :D

      Anything else you've liked from this year?

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  2. Another my mum would love. I need to be writing these down.

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    1. Hope your mom enjoys this one, Jack - I thought it was awfully cute albeit drenched in sappy romantics. :)

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  3. I have never heard of this movie but I look forward to finding it in the video store. I like cheesy made for tv Christmas movies. I look forward to them every year. I have never watched Christmas movie where Santa has a daughter, most of the ones I have watched feature Santa's son.

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    1. So do I, Carlyn. So do I. :) It's one of the best parts of the season - or rather one of the best, most "relaxing" bits of the season.

      I think I've seen a film in which Santa has a daughter but this version was way better. :)

      Enjoy!

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  4. Haven't heard of this one either but will look it up:)

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    1. It was way cute, Gina! If you like Hallmark movies or any sappy, happy-go-lucky Christmas/television films, then you'll probably enjoy this one. :)

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