I know, I know. Halloween just ended and here we are talking about Christmas! Well, compared to Buddy in Elf: Buddy’s Musical Christmas, we’re practically Scrooges for waiting so long. The stop-motion television special which debuted last year has finally made its way to Blu-ray in a DVD combo pack which was released November 3.
Like the name implies, Elf: Buddy’s Musical Christmas is a musical take on the 2003 live-action movie Elf starring Will Ferrell along with the Broadway hit of the same name. If you’re like me, then the original film has already become a Christmas classic with annual viewings in my household. I admit, I held the original in such high regard, I was hesitant to even give the 2014 animated musical a try for fear of tainting the near-sacred movie. However, fear not! The animated version can serve as either an enjoyable companion piece to the original or entirely on its own as a welcome new addition to the Christmas movie pantheon.
Buddy’s Musical Christmas hits some of the same notes as Elf (pun very much intended), but with Big Bang Theory‘s Jim Parsons and the legendary Mark Hamill covering the lead roles of Buddy and Walter, the animated special is unique and takes ownership of its identity as a fun, family-friendly show. The animated special tells the story of Buddy the elf, who is actually a human raised by elves in the North Pole who searches for the father he never knew existed. Despite the rough and tumble “real world” of New York City, Buddy’s sincerity and idealism (and Christmas spirit!) help him through his adventure. If you’re a fan of the classic Rankin Bass Christmas specials, then you’ll undoubtedly find a special appeal to the similarly-styled animation. As endearing as Will Ferrell’s singing was in the original, the new vocal talent has certainly improved in this version and the musical numbers in this are both catchy and sweet.
It can be hard finding new Christmas movies that both kids and adults can enjoy, but Buddy’s Musical Christmas fits the bill. With a 43-minute run time, you may find yourself wanting more, but the quick pace and enjoyable songs means this is perfect for repeat viewings. I can’t yet say that Elf: Buddy’s Musical Christmas will wedge its way between Home Alone, It’s A Wonderful Life, or even the original Elf for a place on my all time favorite holiday movie list, but you cant’ go wrong with this lighthearted tale as a stocking stuffer or early Christmas gift to put you in the spirit!