Deck the Halls (2006 film)
|Deck the Halls (2006 film)|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||John Whitesell|
|Produced by||Arnon Milchan
|Written by||Matt Corman
|Music by||George S. Clinton|
|Edited by||Paul Hirsch|
|Distributed by||20th Century Fox|
|Release dates||November 22, 2006|
|Running time||93 minutes|
Deck the Halls is a 2006 American family comedy film set during the Christmas season in Massachusetts. It stars Danny DeVito, Matthew Broderick, Kristin Davis, and Kristin Chenoweth and is directed by John Whitesell.
Local eye doctor and Christmas expert Steve Finch (Matthew Broderick) wants his kids to have a great Christmas, packed with Steve's tried and true traditions, such as using an advent calendar, taking Christmas card pictures in matching sweaters, and getting a large tree. At night, he hears noises. He looks out his window and sees a moving truck. He and his wife Kelly (Kristin Davis) immediately know that "the new neighbors are moving in." In the morning, when Steve goes to get his paper, he is startled to see someone on his doorstep, stealing the paper, which causes him to spill coffee on himself. The stranger is his new neighbor Buddy Hall (Danny DeVito), a car salesman. Steve and Kelly also meet Buddy's wife Tia (Kristin Chenoweth).
Later that day, Kelly, her daughter Madison (Alia Shawkat) and son Carter (Dylan Blue) go to the Halls' house, where they meet Tia and Buddy's teenage twin daughters, Ashley (Sabrina Aldridge) and Emily (Kelly Aldridge). Tia and Kelly immediately become friends, as do Ashley, Emily and Madison. That night, the Hall sisters discover a website called MyEarth, which shows satellite images of any place from space (seemingly a parody of Google Earth). The Hall house is not visible, so Buddy decides to make it visible using Christmas lights. Due to his lights, Buddy becomes known around the town. Steve is not happy about this as he is considered "the Christmas guy" and is chairman of the town's WinterFest. Buddy also purchases a large horsedrawn sleigh, and finds horses to pull it.
The Finches come to see the sleigh, and are invited to take their Christmas pictures in the sleigh. Steve declines, but Carter enters the sleigh anyway. In attempt to get Carter "out of that death trap" he frightens the horses, who pull him around town, finally plunging into a frozen river. Steve wakes up to find himself naked, zipped into a sleeping bag with Buddy, who is also naked. Buddy explains that he is giving Steve body heat in order to keep him from dying. Steve then starts screaming. Buddy's house is eventually completely lit, and synchronized to music. Steve has had enough with being kept awake each night, and finally fills Buddy's fuse box with snow. His plan is foiled, due to a backup generator.
Buddy and Steve make a bet: if Steve beats Buddy in the WinterFest speedskating race, then Buddy removes the lights, and if Buddy beats Steve, he buys a car from Buddy. Buddy wins, and Steve yells at Buddy for being a nobody, since the Hall house is still not visible from Space. Steve finally buys a large amount of fireworks and a large illegal military grade firework from a gangster and tries to blow up the Hall house. The rocket misfires, and sets the Finch house on fire. Kelly, Carter, Madison, Tia, Ashley, and Emily all decide to stay at a motel to salvage the Christmas. Buddy and Steve forget their rivalry, and build a winter wonderland with all of Buddy's lights and lure Tia, Kelly, and the kids home. They all sit down to a nice meal.
Soon, the whole town helps put Buddy's lights back up in time for a story about them on MTV. The lights don't work, and they all sing carols and use their cell phones as flashlights. As the group sings, Carter notices that one of the plugs of the lights is not plugged in, and this is why the lights do not work. He plugs in the light, causing them to shine brightly through the night. SuChin Pak (played by herself), who is doing the MTV report, gets confirmation that the house is indeed visible from space. The crowd celebrates as the movie ends.
- Danny DeVito as Buddy Hall
- Matthew Broderick as Steve Finch
- Kristin Chenoweth as Tia Hall
- Kristin Davis as Kelly Finch
- Alia Shawkat as Madison Finch
- Dylan Blue as Carter Finch
- Sabrina Aldridge as Ashley Hall
- Kelly Aldridge as Emily Hall
- Josh Hayden as Ben Hall
- Jorge Garcia as Wallace
- Jackie Burroughs as Mrs. Ryor
- Fred Armisen as Gustave
- Gillian Vigman as Gerta
- Jill Krop as Herself
- SuChin Pak as Herself
- Shannon Ostrom as Bystander
- Vu Huynh as Kid Next Door
- Kal Penn as MyEarth Specialist (cameo appearance)
- Sean O'Bryan as Mayor Young
- Gary Chalk as Sheriff Dave
- Nicola Peltz as Mackenzie
- Cory Monteith as Madison's pretender
In the scene in which Steve and Buddy are in a speedskating race, Matthew Broderick (Steve) had to train with a real speedskater for a few months before he could film that scene. He trained at Chelsea Piers in New York (they rented out an entire rink).[verification needed]
As of November 21, 2014 based on 82 reviews, Deck the halls has received a 6% rotten rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Roger Moore of the Orlando Sentinel named it "A leaden slice of fruitcake, with about as much nutritional value," and concluding that "it's not worth working up a good hate over". Stephen Hunter remarked "I literally didn't count a single laugh in the whole aimless schlep," and suggested that the movie should've been named Dreck the Halls instead. Michael Medved named it the "Worst Movie of 2006." Finally, Richard Roeper, co-host of the television show Ebert & Roeper, wrote:
"You cannot believe how excruciatingly awful this movie is. It is bad in a way that will cause unfortunate viewers to huddle in the lobby afterward, hugging in small groups, consoling one another with the knowledge that it's over, it's over -- thank God, it's over. [...] Compared to the honest hard labor performed by tens of millions of Americans every day, a film critic's job is like a winning lottery ticket. But there IS work involved, and it can be painful -- and the next time someone tells me I have the best job in the world, I'm going to grab them by the ear, fourth-grade-teacher-in-1966-style, and drag them to see Deck the Halls."
The film was nominated for three Golden Raspberry Awards:
- Worst Excuse For Family Entertainment
- Worst Supporting Actor (Danny DeVito)
- Worst Supporting Actress (Kristin Chenoweth).
The movie has earned $35,093,569 domestically, and $47,231,070 worldwide.
- Official website
- Deck the Halls at the Internet Movie Database
- Deck the Halls at AllMovie
- Deck the Halls at Rotten Tomatoes