Secret Santa

Secret Santa

Bruce Davison (2001)

PG Certificate


Our Score
Veteran actor Bruce Davison (Senator Robert Kelly in the first two X-Men films) gives well-trodden festive themes a fresh spin in his big-hearted, directorial debut, in which he also plays a small part. Sweet but pleasingly unsentimental, this smart and unusual family treat sees Rory Culkin's tall-story-telling orphan become convinced that an elderly guest at his aunt Sherilyn Fenn's motel workplace is actually a vacationing Santa Claus. Soon, the troubled 10-year-old and the crotchety old fellow (Cocoon's Hume Cronyn, in his penultimate role) have developed a charming, if unlikely, friendship that's made all the more engaging by their fine performances and witty, movingly reflective conversations. Davison handles the film's meaty issues of loss, grief, faith and acceptance with subtlety, while the lively script delivers some really nice twists whenever events threaten to become predictable.


A 10-year-old orphan is sent to live with his aunt after the deaths of his parents, and befriends an old man. He starts to believe his new friend is really Santa Claus, but his new guardian worries that the seemingly kindly stranger is a conman taking advantage of the youngster's faith. Family drama, starring Sherilyn Fenn, Hume Cronyn and Rory Culkin.

Cast & Crew

Patty Winslow Sherilyn Fenn
Sam Clausner Hume Cronyn
Jackson Mayhew Rory Culkin
Dr Zimmer Bruce Davison
Richard Frangello Adam Arkin
Mel Breskin Tom McBeath
Milton Loomis Stephen E Miller
Mona Sanchez Karin Konoval
Director Bruce Davison
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColour
Drama Children's