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Overall Rating

Awesome: 32.14%
Worth A Look49.11%
Average: 8.04%
Pretty Bad: 5.36%
Total Crap: 5.36%

6 reviews, 76 user ratings

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by Dr Nick

"Will Ferrell is coooooming to toooooooown!"
5 stars

Jon Favreau's Elf is an absolute delight from start to finish. The jokes are all spot-on and with great performances throughout, this is essential Christmas viewing. Finally a Christmas film to entertain the whole family.

It’s notoriously difficult to make a good Christmas movie. It’s something about most seasonal films, which just makes most of them….well, stink. For every crappy Jingle all the way, there’s a Santa Clause 2 which manages to be even worse and makes cynics like myself hate Christmas even more. But, every now and then they get it right. Where Terry Zwigoff´s hilarious Bad Santa was aimed more at adult audiences, John Favreau´s Elf is “a film for the whole family” in the true meaning of that phrase. There’s something for everyone in here. Loads of action, bright colours and cute animals for the young ones, the pleasure of seeing Zooey Deschanel in an elf costume for the older guys, surreal and hilarious dialogue as well as some great sing-along action.

Will Ferrell plays Buddy, an orphan who by mistake ends up on the North Pole and is subsequently adopted and raised by Santa’s elves. Being a human in an elf’s word is not easy however, and Buddy finds that his size causes problems. After finding out that he is a human, Buddy travels to New York to look for his real father, Walter Hobbs, a greedy book publisher who amongst other things is on Santa’s naughty list. With his Christmas spirits high Buddy takes in the city, gets a job, tries to get accepted by his dad, falls in love and spreads Christmas joy wherever he sets his foot.

Most Christmas movies are just full of cheap sentiment. Elf, on the other hand is a carefully crafted homage to the jolliest of seasons. Will Ferrell is absolutely brilliant in the role of Buddy and plays the part with such devotion, you almost start fearing for his sanity. His amazement at all the city has to offer, no matter how trivial, is extremely contagious and for a while afterwards I really saw the world through Buddy's eyes -“I saw a dog today! Have you seen a dog?”, he asks his bewildered father, played perfectly by James Caan.

Ok, it gets a bit overly cheesy towards the end, but by then we’re so buttered up by all the charming characters and sometimes insanely surreal dialogue that it doesn’t matter. All you can do is sing along – “You better watch out, you better not cry, you better not pout I’m telling you why” Everybody now! “SANTA CLAUSE IS COMING TO TOWN!” And then he actually does! Yay!

I'm sure Elf will be essential Christmas viewing for years to come and I'm looking forward to seeing it again and again. Jon Favreau has created a modern Christmas classic, and the best part is that Tim Allen is nowhere to be seen.

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originally posted: 12/20/04 22:10:50
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User Comments

12/25/13 Charles Tatum Fun stuff, with energetic cast and direction 4 stars
12/14/10 zenny If you don't like this movie, you're a heartless grinch 5 stars
12/24/09 MP Bartley Funny and kinda sweet, despite plot sinkholes. Ferrell is terrific. 4 stars
12/16/09 A Girl it puts you in the mood? hahahahha 4 stars
1/10/09 Anonymous. i watch this every christmas and it definitely puts me in the mood :] 4 stars
11/17/08 Samantha Pruitt Will Ferrell is really great in it, one movie where he isn't just playing himself! 4 stars
9/04/08 Rachel Not as funny as I'd hoped. Will Ferrell does best at non-PG comedy. 3 stars
8/19/08 Shaun Wallner Will Farrell makes some great films! 5 stars
1/12/08 Pamela White makes a yearly Christmas one to watch 4 stars
6/15/07 Vincent Ebriega A very funny Christmas family movie. Better than expected. 3.5/5. 4 stars
1/03/07 Buddy I like to smile. Smiling's my favorite. 5 stars
12/05/06 Stanley Thai A funny, enjoyable film. It's really good. 4 stars
11/19/06 Ionicera predictable, sorta dumb, but still fun 3 stars
9/03/06 Dragon The Artist Cute, but I wish Ferrell would ditch his half-retarded infantile characters 2 stars
11/23/05 Ambiedextris LOVED IT! It was hilarious! 5 stars
9/08/05 Tom Burns This is the funniest holiday movie in years. 5 stars
8/18/05 ES Could have been better, ferrel is an old dog with no new tricks 3 stars
7/16/05 Charlie Ferrell is great (just like in Anchorman), but the rest of the movie is average. 4 stars
7/10/05 JFK not that good. 3 stars
4/01/05 Carolyn Cherry Hilarious 5 stars
3/26/05 Denise not that funny 2 stars
3/25/05 Valerie One of the best Christmas movies ever! 5 stars
3/25/05 Abbi Feel good film, still makes me laugh 5 stars
2/23/05 gracecchu This was such a funny movie, any time of the year! 4 stars
2/21/05 david basile very funny origanal comedy 5 stars
2/19/05 Diane Stahlman THOUGHT IT WOULD BE FUNNIER 3 stars
2/17/05 Lisa Jochelson Will Ferrell at his stupid comedy best. 4 stars
2/15/05 Christine I thought it was entertaining 4 stars
2/14/05 Angela Saunders Hilarious! Born to be the next Christmas classic! 4 stars
2/13/05 Charlene Javier Better than expected. 4 stars
2/12/05 Ig Didn't like the movie 2 stars
2/10/05 Colleen Goldrick Hysterical and Very Silly 4 stars
2/02/05 BobbysRedQueen My Family enjoyed seeing Elf, especially the kids ! 4 stars
1/17/05 HL Aside from a few funny bits..just stupid crap... 2 stars
1/05/05 HotGirl Way better than I thought it would be. Funny and Touching. 4 stars
12/30/04 Debra Sherman a warm fuzzy for Christmas 4 stars
12/28/04 Jim Some amusing nonsense, some plain old silliness. 4 stars
12/28/04 efrain really funny. simple and sorta family-friendly 4 stars
12/27/04 Alex Ferrell Kills it!! 5 stars
12/25/04 Freddy mostly annoying, not very funny 1 stars
12/25/04 Charlene Javier Unexpectedly funny! 4 stars
11/18/04 Jews for Hitler Pretty funny stuff. Grossed out girlfriend with the spaghetti/poptarts/syrup scene. 5 stars
11/16/04 Dunce Farrel & Newhart - always funny, but this movies isn't. Worth a rental. 3 stars
11/08/04 da hood awp! what the fuck! 1 stars
11/07/04 Evan garbage. kids will love it 1 stars
8/26/04 jmsynth Kids will probably love it. Adults should see "Bad Santa" intsead 2 stars
7/25/04 DM Gets corny towards the end, but has some funny parts 3 stars
7/15/04 S.F What the hell was the ending all about and the chick who sings like a reject from 'Annie'? 1 stars
5/16/04 Idiot's Mouth "Sweet"? "Sensitive"? That is GAY. Farrell is a retard, like all SNL "actors". Save$! AVOID 1 stars
2/04/04 Chris I loved this movie alot. One of the top 10 christmas movies of all time. :) 5 stars
1/02/04 Jon Lyrik Middle somewhat sags, but a funny and sweet movie and maybe even a new Christmas classic. 4 stars
12/26/03 Wolf MUCH Better than I thot it would be; and Zooey's voice is *soo* sexy... :) 5 stars
12/26/03 Marcia Lartz Promising start; Middle DRAGS; Ending sort of okay. 3 stars
12/01/03 NoRefill Good mix of adult and child humor. W. Ferrell's style compliments film well. 4 stars
11/29/03 Emperor's New Clothes? Nope. Just a Fat, Ugly, Naked, Guy. Fell asleep. Maybe I have no sense of humor. Maybe the rest of you don't. 2 stars
11/29/03 k a LOT of fun... just see it 4 stars
11/27/03 Amanda This movie is very funy 5 stars
11/27/03 he a good film 4 stars
11/25/03 Troy Butler 4.5 stars, ... really enjoyable, fun for all ages!!! Highly Recommended!!! 5 stars
11/25/03 Pat Brink This movie is great! See it now...and see it every Christmas! 5 stars
11/23/03 Flick Chick you'll like it, the kids will love it. 4 stars
11/23/03 Nicole Cute & funny 4 stars
11/16/03 bullit16 Very cute. Laugh out loud funny. 4 stars
11/16/03 Jaime I loved this movie!! It was really worth seeing:) 5 stars
11/12/03 Dee Soon to be a Christmas classic 5 stars
11/12/03 nick2k not amy sedaris, andy richter, kyle gass, and matt walsh is in it!!! 4 stars
11/12/03 Two-G - horror_blood2 (aka Double G) Hilarious Movie! 5 stars
11/11/03 Cameron Slick Ferrell is just as funny in this one as he was in Old School, only on a different field. 4 stars
11/10/03 OSU1992 OHMYGOD this movie sucked. 1 stars
11/10/03 kaori lost it was sooooo cute and funny. A film with lots of heart. 5 stars
11/10/03 Miss B. Haven SANTAAAAA!!!!!OH MY GOD!!!!! i know him!! funny, sweet movie 5 stars
11/09/03 George Jung Amazing. 5 stars
11/08/03 Vicious Ferrell was great. 4 stars
11/08/03 Blubberbot Very funny 5 stars
11/07/03 Boombah Baby Surprisingly great. Nice job, Ferrell and Favreau! 5 stars
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  07-Nov-2003 (PG)
  DVD: 26-Oct-2010



Directed by
  Jon Favreau

Written by
  David Berenbaum

  Will Ferrell
  James Caan
  Zooey Deschanel
  Bob Newhart
  Ed Asner
  Mary Steenburgen

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