Tim Allen makes an impressive screen debut in Disney's well-written seasonal film The Santa Clause
. Divorced toy company executive Scott Calvin is pleased to have his son Charlie for Christmas, though the boy himself isn't happy about it. But when Santa Claus accidentally topples off the roof of the house and falls with a thud in the snow, Scott finds himself taking the merry old elf's place and earning new respect in his son's eyes. When the night ends, the reindeer take them to the North Pole, and Scott discovers that by donning the fabled red suit, he's inadvertently agreed to become the next Santa Claus. It's an enjoyable, straightforward family film, anchored by the affable charisma of Allen.--Bret Fetzer
Considering how lame a sequel it could have been, The Santa Clause 2 makes for a pleasant seasonal diversion. It's got the familiar smell of Disney marketeering, and more than a few parents will object to this further embellishment of the St Nick legend, but Tim Allen's amiable presence provides ample compensation. According to the "Missus Clause" in his North Pole contract, he can't continue to be the real Santa until he gets married. It's all as sweet as spiced eggnog, with that warmed-over feel of a mandated sequel, but the Christmas spirit does prevail with the sound of sleigh bells and Allen's rosy-cheeked "Ho, ho, ho!". --Jeff Shannon
A double bill of seasonal comedy. In 'The Santa Clause' (1994) Tim Allen stars as Scott Calvin, a cynical toy company executive who is forced to take over the job of Santa Claus when he and his son Charlie witness the previous incumbent falling off a roof. Soon Scott finds himself putting on weight, growing a white beard and fulfiling his obligation to deliver presents to all the children around the world. He even finds himself reluctantly getting into the spirit of things! Whilst in 'The Santa Clause 2' (2002) it is now 8 years later and Calvin (Allen) has got used to the job. But things have started to go wrong; he begins to lose his resemblance to Santa and his son Charlie (Eric Lloyd) has ended up on the 'naughty' list. It transpires that Calvin's contract stipulates he has to have a Mrs Santa and so he sets off to find one, leaving a duplicate Santa the Elves made to cover for him. However, things are not that easy as Calvin finds women are not flocking to date a large, white-bearded man from the North Pole, and the duplicate Santa has begun to play up and may not give up the role.