Quick Review: Jack Frost

Kicking off the festive review season, I wanted to start with a Christmas movie that I loved as a kid: Jack Frost.

For those who don’t have the pleasure of knowing this movie, a brief synopsis: Jack Frost, played by Michael Keaton, is a band-playing dad who lives on the road. Though he promises to stay for Christmas, the gig of a lifetime is calling his name and he can’t refuse.

But when a snowstorm kicks in on the mountains, Jack turns around to be with his family. However, he never makes it back. Brought back as a snowman, Jack spends what little time he has with his son. Before, ultimately, leaving again.

It is a bizarre movie, but as a kid I ate this stuff up. But rewatching it now older...it wasn’t the same reaction.

I have to mention the shocking CGI, though it was 1998, I can’t get over how creepy and unsettling the snowman looks. Only now finding out that the physical puppet was created by none other than Jim Henson's Creature Shop.

The snowman just has this unnatural, uncanny valley look. The way it puckers it’s lips or winks is just wrong and gross, it really pulled me out of the movie but that could just be me.

The story is a little shaky, while the ending and beginning are pretty solid, a whole middle chunk of the movie is where it falls apart.

There isn’t much that goes on besides this hockey game that Charlie, the son, plays. The worst parts of this movie are when the snowman appears on screen, the jokes don’t work or are very outdated, it’s never explained why a magical harmonica exists or how it works; it’s just magical for the plot to work.

The supposed villain of the story, a school bully with Scooby Doo: Spooky Island hair, immediately has a change of heart towards the end that came from nowhere.

As well as the legendary quote: “I’d rather have snow dad than no dad.”

Clearly, he doesn't see the issues occurring in front of him, a talking snowman who claims to be the father of the person he bullied, melting, you don’t make a funny quip.

The side characters only serve to discourage Charlie, again being framed as the villains in the movie. Though would you believe a 12-year-old who claims their dead dad is a snowman?

As I said before, the ending is pretty good compared to the rest of the movie, it has a sweet goodbye with the father, who is no longer a snowman, and his wife and child.

Overall, the jokes aren’t funny besides a few one-liners by Keaton, the story falls apart after the snowman is introduced and it’s design is something made from a nightmare. No matter how much bugs me about it, I can’t stop watching it. But that’s nostalgia for you.

Jack Frost gets 2 out of 5 magical harmonicas from me.

Jack Frost is currently available to stream on Netflix.

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