‘A Boy Called Christmas’ on Netflix, Where Maggie Smith Tells a New Version of Santa’s Origin

Saint Nicholas has a new origin in A boy called Christmas on Netflix. This time, the kid who will be Santa Claus embarks on a surprisingly dark fairy tale quest and encounters one of the character actors in elaborate fantasy costumes. Is this an origin story worth retcon or should you just stick with the Rankin/Bass canon?

Gist: A boy called Christmas presented exactly the way every movie should be presented: as a bedtime story told by Maggie Smith. This is an old story about a boy named Nikolas (Henry Lawfull) who lived in the woods with his father Joel (Michiel Huisman) long ago in Finland. At Nikolas’ request, Joel regularly recounts the story of a young girl named Lumi and her journey to a magical land called Elfhelm. This idyllic life (well, Nikolas thinks so; Joel knows better) is interrupted when the king (Jim Broadbent) orders the most difficult villagers to cross the borders of their kingdom to bring back. something that gives hope. Whoever does so gets a reward — and Joel knows his family of two needs the dough!

Joel sets out on a quest to find this vague idea of ​​hope, leaving Nikolas in the “care” of his truly terrible aunt Caroltta (Kristen Wiig). But when days and weeks passed and still no sign of his father, Nikolas decided to set out and find him and Elfhelm. The boy brings his trusty hamster Miika and begins his epic quest.

A SON IS CALLED CHRISTMAS - (LR) Kristen Wiig as Aunt Carlotta and Henry Lawfull as Nikolas. Cr: Larry Horricks / NETFLIX © 2021 Netflix US, LLC - Studiocanal SAS
Studiocanal SAS / NETFLIX

What movies will remind you of?: The right structure out of Princess Bride and the theme is suitable for the Netflix cartoon Santa Claus Klaus. Indeed, the film has a lot in common with a few classic youth fantasy films created to both please and annoy children: The witches and The story never ends. Or maybe it will remind you of Santa Claus: The Movie, both are the origin of Santa Claus and a children’s horror film of the 1980s.

Performances worth watching: It caves in that I can’t narrow this down to just one performer. Jim Broadbent’s King got a small part, but he’s responsible for some of the biggest laughs in the movie. And Kristen Wiig and Sally Hawkins are clearly having a blast playing the villains so well. But I’ll give this to Stephen Merchant as the voice of Miika Mouse. He succeeded in making Miika both cute and innocent. It was a clever and captivating performance for a rat learning to speak word for word.

A SON IS CALLED AS CHRISTMAS - (Photo) Miika the Mouse (voiced by Stephen Merchant). Cr: NETFLIX © 2021 Netflix US, LLC - Studiocanal SAS
Studiocanal SAS / NETFLIX

Memorable dialogue: Imagine Dame Maggie Smith saying this: “It’s always been the way. The darkest night will end. The sun will rise, and the Christmas mornings will come again, when anything and everything is possible.” Chills, right?

Holiday traditions: The Elfhelm elves celebrate Christmas, which is what members of the Resistance (yes, there’s an elves resistance!) call their hopeful belongings.

Does the title make any sense?: Watch as the movie is about a boy who gets the nickname Christmas and accidentally learns why in his quest, yes.

A SON IS CALLED AS CHRISTMAS - (Picture) Sally Hawkins as Mother Something. Cr: NETFLIX © 2021 Netflix US, LLC - Studiocanal SAS
Studiocanal SAS / NETFLIX

Our Take: A boy called Christmas one of other things film types. That’s the kind of movie you watch as a kid and think years later, “Wait – did I actually watch a horse drown in a swamp because the horse can’t beat sadness?” I’m a fully grown person, someone who has grown up The story never ends, and A boy called Christmas right now I’m thinking, “Wait — I actually watched Kristen Wiig do it that to a turnip? This is a Christmas movie for children that is not afraid of the cold and dark as December is often seen.

But the film also has a lot of warmth and lightness, and the final balance it finds between the two feels satisfying. It helps everyone to participate A boy called Christmas approached their roles, from production design to performance, with equal enthusiasm. There are so many hearts in this—strange heart, but heart.

And it all worked, all the dark aspects of the movie worked, because Henry Lawfull plays Nikolas/Christmas with such wide eyes of surprise and seriousness. This is a tough character type to play, because they can easily be seen as one-sided and worse, unbelievably gullible. Lawfull sometimes considers Nikolas gullible, but he always plays a kid with hidden pragmatism and determination.

Photo: Netflix / Studiocanal

The story, based on the 2016 children’s novel of the same name by Matt Haig, is a familiar story (with Santa Claus origin) done in a familiar way (the quest of a good old hero). ) – but that’s not a critique. I think A boy called Christmas there’s so much uniqueness to it, from the look to the core of its Christmas mythology, that it makes this believable story structure feel unpredictable. You know the boy called Christmas named Nikolas is going to become Santa Claus, but you’re not sure how or even what of his allies will live to see him slide down his first chimney. And while adults have seen dozens of movies that tackle questions about Santa in a variety of ways, A boy called Christmas Will give all the kids their own answers this holiday season — and I think they’ll enjoy this adventure into Santa’s history as much as parents. Santa Claus Is Comin ‘to Town , Santa Claus: The Movie, or Santa Clause.

That is, as long as the kids can handle what Kristen Wiig does with that radish.

Our call: INSTRUCTIONS IT. A boy called Christmas is an entertaining and imaginative journey for kids who don’t mind a little bit of darkness in their fairy tale.

Current A boy called Christmas on Netflix

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