Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Snow (2004)

Tom Cavanagh and Ashley Williams star in this pleasant enough Christmas fantasy film that almost rises above the level of average, thanks to the two likeable leads, but doesn't quite make it.

Cavanagh plays Nick Snowden, a man best known to children everywhere as Santa Claus. Nick has to make an unplanned journey when one of his reindeer is spotted by an unscrupulous hunter (Patrick Fabian), tranquilised and taken away to a city zoo. He needs to get the reindeer back for obvious reasons but he also just wants it out of the way from prying eyes as it's not quite learned how to fly yet but should be getting to that stage at any moment. Nick ends up enlisting the help of animal keeper Sandy Brooks (Ashley Williams) but he can only tell her so much. Who would believe that he's really Santa Claus and who would believe that he can use mirrors to travel between the North Pole and anywhere in the world? Well, maybe young Hector (Bobb'e J. Thompson) would but not many others.

Directed by Alex Zamm and written by Rich Burns, Snow is a decent little slice of family entertainment. Okay, so it does enough throughout to keep reminding you that it's a TV movie but it's better than a hundred other uninspired and unimaginative TV movies that have been churned out to fill schedules at this most wonderful time of year.

Tom Cavanagh may seem a bit bland to some people. Oh, alright, he IS quite bland, there's no denying it but I still like him nonetheless (mainly because I used to catch occasional episodes of Ed and then I also enjoyed his character popping up in Scrubs). Ashley Williams brightens up the screen so the movie is lifted slightly whenever she's involved, which is quite a lot, and Patrick Fabian is a fun "baddie". Bobb'e J. Thompson, despite his ridiculously apostrophised name, is good fun as the young smartass who has his heart in the right place.

There are plenty of snowy moments, some cute reindeer, fun with Santa making sure that nobody thinks he's Santa and at least one scene reminiscent of Ernest Saves Christmas ensuring that it's not all bad.


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