A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
A mix of messages. The primary one is that science isn't always right and magic has an important place in childhood. Also, bullies are sometimes just people with problems -- in this case, the ice monster felt neglected by Santa and lashed out at him. But less positive are the confusing messages about junk food (Santa eats tons of donuts and hides his indulgences from his wife), women (Mrs. Claus is skinny, busty, and wears skin-tight clothes while cavorting provocatively), and friendship (Trevor locks his friend in a shed when she tries to get in his way).
Positive Role Models
Trevor is determined to prove his point. But he lies, mildly, to his parents in the process without repercussion. Santa shows generosity even to his enemies. The twin friends are nerdy stereotypes, but adorable, and their smarts are played up rather than made fun of.
Violence & Scariness
The main villain is an ice monster with a menacing appearance. He shoots snow out of his hands, roars angrily, and threatens Santa and kids. But he doesn't hurt anyone, or destroy much, and in the end he turns out to be a sweet guy.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Very mild flirting between tween boy and girl. She kisses him on the cheek in the end. Parents snuggle.
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A few insults directed mostly at bad guys, like "ugly" and "pathetic."
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that this CGI-animated movie ponders the existence of Santa Claus. The bad guys are an ice monster and his three evil snowmen sidekicks, and these characters, while silly and relatively harmless, threaten Santa Claus and make a lot of noise in the process. The youngest viewers might get upset by this. Also, the main characters -- a tween boy and girl -- have a mildly romantic relationship that results in a kiss on the cheek. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
While the movie does have some unique elements, including an emphasis on science and several funny musical numbers, the overall tale is sort of blah. Never does Santa or Christmas actually seem threatened, and while the characters are pleasant and somewhat unconventional, they don't evolve in any remarkable way over the course of the story. The movie certainly has a lot of energy though, and this will be enough to keep most kids engaged.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.