Jodie Sweeten stars in Finding Santa, where she has to find [plot device] to save the [plot device] and the only one who can save us is Ben…. (Played by Eric Winter… I did NOT make that up.) Oh, but Ben doesn’t seem to like Christmas!
So not only is the plot hilariously predictable, it’s also kind of insane. I understand that when you’re getting close to Christmas, booking an experienced Santa Claus is difficult, but the idea that the only person who can fill the big fat red suit is a 35-year-old skinny writer who’s Dad runs a Santa school doesn’t make a lot of sense.
And then we get into this old chestnut:
Yeah, the only thing more tired than “will they or won’t they” is the ol’ Pride and Prejudice rip off. When the lead in a Hallmark movie has instant conflict with a member of the opposite sex, you immediately know exactly how the movie is going to end. This creates a terrible predicament for the film makers because only one question is left to answer:
Will they get to the inevitable kiss in an interesting way?
All such hope is MISBEGOTTEN.
That’s this movie’s problem – the plot is ridiculous, you know how it’s going to end, but to watch the characters fight to delay the inevitable is beyond frustrating. That’s what makes a movie like Finding Santa so annoying – the frustration factor. When no one has a reasonable argument to create or sustain conflict, it makes the viewing experience beyond annoying.
And that’s what Finding Santa is – a frustrating experience from beginning to end. Jodie Sweeten and Eric Winter are charming enough, but the screenplay is soooooo lazy. You can only have the same argument so many times before it becomes nails on a chalkboard. If one were to take a shot every time Ben says, “I have to get back to Boston,” they’d be drunk halfway through the movie and dead by the time it was over.
So should you add Finding Santa to your DVR? Probably not. It’s not the masochist free for all that is A December Bride, but it’s close.