Here’s an early Xmas treat: a family-friendly comedy about a human baby who crawls into Santa’s sleigh and winds up being raised by elves. Will Ferrell plays the grown-up doofus who must travel from the North Pole to Manhattan to find his real father (James Caan), a hard-ass publisher of children’s books, and teach him the true meaning of Christmas.
OK, yuk. But Ferrell makes the damn thing work. Even though he can’t get naked or use naughty words, there’s a devil of comedy in Ferrell, and he lets it out to play. Director Jon Favreau has the good sense to just stand out of his way.