Elf is one of my favorite holiday movies. It stars Will Ferrell as Buddy, a human infant who is inadvertently taken to the North Pole with Santa Claus and raised as an elf. It soon becomes apparent to Buddy that he is not an elf after a growth spurt makes him twice as tall as any of the elves. Buddy finds out from his elf father (played by Bob Newhart) that is real father is in New York.
Buddy leaves the North Pole in search of his real father (played by James Caan), who turns out to be a heartless jerk with a neglected family. Can Buddy turn his real father around so that he is filled with holiday spirit? You’ll just have to watch the movie to find out.
Zooey Deschanel and Mary Steenburgen round out the cast as Buddy’s love interest and stepmother respectively. Ed Asner is well-cast as Santa Claus. Look for Amy Sedaris, Peter Dinklage, Jon Favreau and Andy Richter in minor supporting roles.
The movie is very funny in the slapstick vein and plays on Buddy’s elf upbringing. Not having been raised by humans, Buddy has a wide-eyed innocence and often responds inappropriately to situations he finds himself in.
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Worth a look if you like Will Ferrell and/or slapstick comedy.
Skip it if you are a blackhearted grinch or think Scrooge was just misunderstood.