When Fred Clausâ€™ little brother was born, he promised to be the best big brother he could be. But that began to prove difficult, as little Nicholas was always showing him up. Nicholas was always giving and jolly. Their mother constantly said to Fred, â€œWhy canâ€™t you be more like your brother?â€ So as time went on, Fred grew more bitter towards Nicholas and the rest of his family. Though, when Fred gets into trouble, he calls his brother to help him out. But Nicholas (Santa) gives an ultimatum. He has to come work at the North Pole for a few days. But, unbeknownst to Fred, an inspector has come to the North Pole too. And he has the power to shut down Santa and Christmas altogether.
Trouble and highjinks ensue when Fred begins working at Santaâ€™s workshop. Fred is well-meaning, but disaster always seems to follow him. Vince Vaughn plays the same character he usually does, but this is probably the tamest, cleanest role heâ€™s done so far. Paul Giamatti, of course, plays a wonderful Santa Claus. Though the waxy, prosthetic hands were a bit much and bothered me throughout the movie. Kathy Bates and Kevin Spacey both have fantastic roles as Mom and the villainous inspector, consecutively.
While the story was very predictable, so is every other family Christmas movie. And Iâ€™m a sucker for cute Christmas movies. And this one had enough laughs that most everyone should enjoy. My favorite scene was when Fred goes to a â€œBrothers Anonymousâ€ meeting, where Sylvester Stalloneâ€™s brother, Bill Clintonâ€™s brother, and Stephen Baldwin are all there complaining about their more famous brothers. Sibling rivalry at itâ€™s best.