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The Magical Christmas Tree

Critic:

Jason Knight

|

Posted on:

2 Jul 2022

Film Reviews
The Magical Christmas Tree
Directed by:
Scott Hillman
Written by:
Scott Hillman
Starring:
Socks Whitmore, Ky Mullen, Shane Ryan, Raven Miles, Jaclyn Marfuggi
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A cute tale about the magic of Christmas.

 

As the title suggests, this is a festive story and it is about a young woman named Pace (Whitmore), who works as an accountant for a company in Los Angeles and her boss, Mr Strickling (Ryan), is a mean man. One day, shortly before Christmas, he arrives at the workplace as a completely changed man, embracing life and getting his employees to prepare for a Christmas office party. Pace is tasked with finding a tree and Mr Strickling wants her to get it from its natural habitat. So, she sets off into the wilderness to locate an appropriate tree, where she encounters an elf.

 

This hour-long feature could be described as a festive fairytale comedy adventure. The main concept is the preparation for the office party, for which Pace has to find a tree and two of her colleagues need to prepare the feast. Although Pace's story is the main focus, the narrative moves between her in the forest and Toma and Ellering as they deal with the food and Strickling as he uses his new persona to influence others and spread joy.

 

A key element of the movie is self-discovery. As Pace walks through the woods holding an axe, alongside her unusual companion, in search of a tree to cut down, the two of them learn a lot about each other and build a rapport between them. Eventually, Pace begins to learn more about herself and the values of Christmas. Toma and Ellering go through a similar experience, as they too discuss their lives and issues and warm up towards each other. And of course there is Strickling, who has found all the goodness within him after he claims to have been visited by three spirits. All the protagonists (including the elf) go through personal changes and learn how to be happier.

 

Although this is a Christmas film, it is an uncommon one because it takes place at a location where there is no snow and the festive decorations are seen briefly. The presence of the elf is a strong reminder that this is a story about that special time of year and of course there is the constant preparation for the office party and a lot of discussions about Christmas.

 

The cast deliver entertaining performances and they make the characters likeable. Whitmore portrays a goodhearted and a bit naive and lonely person who appears to need more people into her life. Mullen plays the most intriguing character, that being the female elf, who states that she is the guardian of the forest. She looks human, apart from pointed ears and she wears green clothing, including a cape and it is hinted that she might not actually be that supernatural entity. Marfuggi plays a cheerful office worker and Toma's character is rather down-to-earth. Ryan's character is a sort of reference to Ebenezer Scrooge, as he walks around the company's offices wearing a dressing gown and a hat, claiming to have changed his ways and spreading festive positivity after having been visited by spirits. His character represents tha happiness that exists in Christmas.

 

Hillman does a great job as director and creates wonderful establishing shots of Los Angeles. Editor Michael Tang effectively utilises wipe techniques and the music that is heard throughout sounds light-hearted and magical and develops a Christmas-like atmosphere.

 

This is a heart-warming Christmas movie about self-discovery, friendship, support and the joy of embracing life. Although at times the film might be a bit silly, that does not stop it from being an enjoyable viewing.

About the Film Critic
Jason Knight
Jason Knight
Indie Feature Film