Fred Claus

Rated NR

Director David Dobkin and writer Dan Fogelman manage to make Vince Vaughn, one of the funniest men in the world, remarkably unfunny in this woeful holiday-season misfire. Making this all the more incredible is that Dobkin directed Wedding Crashers, one of the funniest films of the last 10 years. This film, in which Vaughn plays the neglected older brother of Santa Claus, is listless, negative, painfully humorless stuff that will not become a holiday staple à la Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer. This will just serve as a reminder that, sometimes, Christmas can unfortunately suck ass. Paul Giamatti is the worst Santa ever, and Rachel Weisz plays a meter maid from England. It’s hard to watch Vaughn deal with what he’s been given here, but he still manages a few laughs amidst the ruins. Kevin Spacey delivers some career-worst work as an efficiency expert looking to end Santa’s reign. Avoid at all costs.

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