You’ve got to hand it to director Michael Lembeck… he’s succeeded in persuading studio bosses to let him make not one but two sequels from premises that were dead in the water from the word go. Tim Allen dons the white beard once again for his role as benign dictator of a kitsch North Pole toy factory. Cast your mind back to the original (what, you haven’t seen it?) and you’ll remember that mortal Allen’s Santa was a miserable git who rued the day he signed a contract to become every Western child’s festive fantasy figure. Well, 12 years have passed and he’s now a happy Santa. His dim, neglected relatives and pregnant wife (Elizabeth Mitchell) aren’t so happy, mind, so he invites them all up to the Pole under the auspices they’re staying at some Canadian retreat. But that’s only half the story… The other half revolves around Martin Short’s scheming Jack Frost, who wants Santa’s post, and will sabotage anything to get it. The film improves as it progresses, but you could string together sequences from all three of these movies and not notice the joins. Samey, in other words.
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