If I ever actually meet Santa Claus, I’ll be really disappointed if he doesn’t look like a bearded Kurt Russell.
Russell plays the role of St. Nicholas in The Christmas Chronicles 2 and he’s absolutely perfect in the role. It’s not just that Russell is an intensely likable actor, though that’s certainly some of it. Santa, after all, should be a likable character and it’s pretty much impossible not to like Kurt Russell. Even when he was killing people in Death Proof, he was still the most likable serial killer that you could ever hope to meet. Beyond just being likable, though, Russell brings a lot of joi de vivre to the role of Santa. As played by Russell, Santa loves what he does. Spreading Christmas cheer and keeping the holiday spirit alive is what he lives for. Over the years, movies have given us stern Santas and humorous Santas and occasionally even incompetent Santas. Kurt Russell is the fun Santa.
In The Christmas Chronicles 2, Russell is joined by his real-life partner, Goldie Hawn. Goldie plays Mrs. Claus, who turns out to be a witch but a good one. She’s the type of witch who makes gingerbread cookies the explode, which is certainly the best type of witch to be. As I watched Goldie Hawn in this film, it occurred to me that if Hollywood is ever foolish enough to try to remake The Wizard of Oz, Goldie would be the perfect choice for Glinda. Not surprisingly, Hawn and Russell have a lot of chemistry in The Christmas Chronicles 2. They’re the perfect couple. They’re exactly who you would hope Santa and Mrs. Claus would turn out to be.
(I have to say that, of all the Hollywood couples out there, Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn are the couple that I would want to actually live next door to. Kurt seems like he would be good about repairing stuff around the neighborhood while Goldie seems like she would be the type to keep an eye on my Amazon deliveries until I got home from work or wherever. I’d much rather live next to them than George and Amal Clooney, if just because the Clooneys seem like they would be the type to complain because you accidentally clipped their yard with a lawn mower or something.)
The Christmas Chronicles 2 actually does have a plot and it tells a pretty sweet little story. A bitter elf named Belsnickel (Julian Dennison) is trying to ruin Christmas and it’s all up to Katie (Darby Camp) and Jack (Jahzir Bruno) to help Santa and Mrs. Claus save the world’s Christmas spirit. Along the way, Katie gets to travel through time and meet her father and both Katie and Jack learn about the importance of family. It’s all very sincere and very sweet and if it doesn’t bring at least one tear to your eyes this holiday season, you’re hopeless. That said, The Christmas Chronicles 2 is ultimately all about star power and charisma. The film works because Russell and Hawn are a total joy to watch. Consider this: it’s a 114-minute film but the main story is resolved in 90 minutes. The remaining 24 minutes are spent watching Russell and Hawn light a Christmas tree and hang out with Santa’s elves and it’s absolutely delightful to watch! By the end of the film, you basically just want to move to the North Pole and live with the Clauses.
The Christmas Chronicles 2 is currently on Netlfix and it’s a fun little holiday romp. It’s perfect for kids and the adults who sometimes have to watch movies with them. There’s a great musical number and a few surprisingly clever jokes. (I loved that when Santa and Mrs. Claus watched It’s A Wonderful Life, it was a version that had been dubbed into the Elvish language.) Check it out. It’ll lift your holiday spirits.