‘The Christmas Chronicles 2’ review: North Pole wonderland or bust?

Kurt Russell and Goldie Hawn in “The Christmas Chronicles 2″ Netflix/Courtesy

Just in time for the Christmas spirit, “The Christmas Chronicles 2” is a fresh new take on the tale of Santa Claus. Mrs. Claus (Goldie Hawn) may have stirred up some hype with the stay-at-home moms, but her character was simply plain and dry. Santa Claus (Kurt Russel) hones in on some Grease-like vibes, which helped pick up the lull in the middle of the film, but the acting between the characters is slightly awkward and missing a dash of the holiday spirit.

Russel is no comparison to Tim Allen in The Santa Claus (1994), which received a similar rating. “The Christmas Chronicles 2” received a slightly lower rating from IMDb and Rotten Tomatoes, making complete sense since the character pairing was not as charismatic as those in The Santa Claus. Furthermore, this sequel landed on number one on Netflix’s top ten list of movies.

There’s even a tale about the naughty elf Belsnickel (Julian Dennison). Somehow, the irony of Dwight Schrute’s rendition in season 9, episode 9 of The Office, made this cheesy sequel a little more bearable. The tale of Belsnickel is German folklore about a naughty elf of Santa’s who terrorizes naughty children. This character in “The Christmas Chronicles 2” brings some suspenseful trouble making as the film plays out.

Santa’s workshop’s set design was more dark and gloomy than one would imagine, but the tiny elves brought some color and Christmas cheer that helped lighten up the screen. Their little colorful outfits filled the workshop as they hustled and bustled to get ready for Christmas day.

The special effects didn’t offer much excitement, considering that the film’s genre is supposed to be an action-comedy. Santa and Mrs. Claus’s elvish magic seemed to be the only considerable special effect that made a difference throughout the film.

If anyone’s looking for a holiday movie to cozy up with their friends or family, “The Christmas Chronicles 2” might do the trick, but don’t have any high expectations. The family-comedy is still a feel-good film that will excite the household and get everyone into the Christmas spirit.