Individual tolerance for cuteness will determine viewer reaction to this made-for-TV spin on the Santa legend. An aging Santa Claus (Charles Durning) and his wife, Queen Carlotta (Katherine Helmond), are preparing a ceremonial passing of the reins for their son, Nick St. Nicholas (Kelsey Grammer), but the absentee heir is partying in Florida. Despite the Jiminy Cricket-style advice of his butler, Jasper (Brian Bedford), Nick isn't ready to abdicate his current title Miami's most eligible bachelor for the yule-time duties to which he was born. But when public relations whiz Hector Villarba (Luis Estaban Garcia) proposes that Nick endorse a Christmas website, MrStNick.com, Nick happily agrees. Hector seals the deal by fixing up Nick with a luscious client, television weather-girl Heidi Gardelle (Elaine Hendrix). What Nick doesn't realize is that Hector and Heidi are lovers who are planning to help themselves to the charitable contributions they envision flowing into MrStNick.com's coffers. While Nick fantasizes about marrying the duplicitous Heidi, real love is going unnoticed right beneath his nose, in the form of his sultry new housekeeper, Lorena (Ana Ortiz). Nick comes under investigation by the IRS, who suspect him of hiring illegal aliens, and INS inspector Nardo (Colin Cunningham) decides to take a look at Nick's computer-based charity program. Thanks to Hector and Heidi, Nick could be headed for a white-collar jail instead of a North Pole workshop. In order to clear the family name from a scandal and save Nick from himself, his parents pay a visit to the sunshine state, but prideful Nick will have to admit his mistakes before he can take over the family business. Fans of TV star Grammer (of Cheers and its popular spinoff, Frasier) will get their fill of the fussy star's patented double takes in this good-natured Christmas comedy, and he's supported by a fine supporting cast. Writers Maryedith Burrell, Debra Frank and Steven L. Hayes don't deliver much in the way of sparkling dialogue, but they put the characters through enough comically embarrassing situations to keep the merriment coming.
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- Released: 2002
- Rating: NR
- Review: Individual tolerance for cuteness will determine viewer reaction to this made-for-TV spin on the Santa legend. An aging Santa Claus (Charles Durning) and his wife, Queen Carlotta (Katherine Helmond), are preparing a ceremonial passing of the reins for thei… (more)