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Movie Mom

Dann Gire’s Take on Santa Movies

posted by Nell Minow

My friend Dann Gire writes about Santa Claus movies, from the naughty to the nice.

Traditional Christmas movies showcase St. Nicholas as a generically sweet, generous fellow with a belly filled with jelly and the gentle disposition of a giant stuffed panda.

Popular Santa Claus movies such as “Miracle on 34th Street” and “Santa Claus — The Movie” perpetuate the pop-culture image of a highly industrious bearded saint who dispenses Christmas spirit, delivers toys on time and treats his reindeer like family pets.

But then, there are those other Santa movies. You know the ones, featuring alternate, even subversive views of the beloved holiday icon.

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Some are naughty — ranging from mildly frightening to downright homicidal. And some are nice — ranging from paternalistically caring to sweetly ineffectual.

My favorite movie Santa is still Edmund Gwenn in “Miracle on 34th Street.”

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