THE GIST: All his life, Buddy (Will Ferrell) thought he was an elf, despite being more the twice the size of the rest of the residents at the North Pole. That is, until one day he overhears two elves talking about him behind his back. Then Papa Elf (Bob Newhart) admits it: Buddy is human. He was adopted as a baby. But, although Buddy’s real mother is no longer around, his dad (James Caan) lives just in New York, so Buddy sets off to find him, only to find out the hard way that the “real” world is nothing like home.
NAUGHTY OR NICE: Nice, but not in the corny true-meaning-of-Christmas kind of way. Instead, this flick pokes fun at the way we celebrate Christmas, only to raise the holiday spirit at the end.
WHY IT GETS US IN THE SPIRIT: This film was an instant, modern holiday classic. It’s hilarious and steers clear of most clichés. Aside from the gift-giving and turkey, it gives you something else to look forward to every season.
MAGIC MOMENT: OK, in the spirit of Christmas it should maybe be something else, but when Buddy joins Jovie (Zooey Deschanel) mid-song in the locker room, she tells him not to look at her and get out, so he covers his eyes and runs. Right into a wall of lockers.
SANTA SIGHTING: In one of the more cheesy moments of this flick, Santa Ed Asner makes his appearance and gets a crowd in Central Park singing a cheery carol to give his sleigh the power it needs to fly. Like I said, really cheesy.
ACCOMPANYING CAROL: “Baby, It’s Cold Outside.” Do Will Ferrell and Zooey Deschanel know that they make a pretty good singing duo?
PERFECT PRESENT FOR: Anyone who refuses to grow up. Which is pretty much any Will Ferrell fan.