Counterfeit Christmas

Patrick Swayze in Christmas in Wonderland (2007)

Christmas is coming and the Saunders family have just moved to Edmonton, well that is Wayne (Patrick Swayze - Keeping Mum) and his three kids as his wife Judy (Rachel Hayward) is stuck in L.A. and can't get a flight out. With Wayne finding out the job he relocated the family for has gone and his two sons not bothered by Christmas it is just 6 year old Mary (Amy Schlagel, Zoe Schlage) who is in the mood for Christmas. Despite this Wayne takes the kids to the mall to get stuff for Christmas and whilst there 12 year old Brian (Matthew Knight) and Mary come across a bag of counterfeit money and go on a major Christmas spending spree. But that just leads to trouble as not only are the crooks trying to find the kids but so are the Canadian Mounties.

"Christmas in Wonderland" has all the ingredients to be an okay Christmas movie for young children who won't realise that everything in it is a cliche. But something went wrong and "Christmas in Wonderland" ends up one of the dullest most uninvolving Christmas movies going. And that is a hard thing to say because as a fan of Patrick Swayze and Christmas movies I wanted this to work and when it doesn't it is sad.

Now don't ask me what went wrong because as I said it has all the ingredients; the moody teenager who doesn't want to do the family thing at the mall, the little girl who loves Christmas as well as a couple of bungling criminals. In fact fans of "How I Met Your Mother" will smile because Chris Kattan who was Jed Moseley stars as one of the bungling crooks. We also have inept chases, kids splurging money without a care in the world and so on but still it is incredibly dull and at times lifeless. When it isn't lifeless it just gets it wrong such as a scene where the kids spend big in the food court and then a toy store and we hear the song "Walking on Sunshine" which is completely out of context for the scene.

The only thing which I can come up with as a positive is that in amongst the cast of "Christmas in Wonderland" there is not only Patrick Swayze but also Carmen Electra and Tim Curry. But these actors are basically there as support to the younger stars who deliver the sort of performance you will find from countless other kids in countless other Christmas movies which means forgettable.

What this all boils down to is that "Christmas in Wonderland" ends up sadly a disappointing Christmas movie which despite having all the ingredients fails to come together to make a memorable or frankly good Christmas movie.

Tags: Christmas Movies

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