Merry In-Laws (2012) Movie Review

Merry In-Laws (2012)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Shelley Long and George Wendt in Merry In-Laws (2012)

The In-Laws Bring Cheers

Single mum of one, Alex Spencer (Kassia Warshawski), has been raised to be logical and scientific by her academic father who would be happy for her daughter to settle down with someone who is as logical as he is. What he isn't so happy about is when she gets engaged to Peter (Lucas Bryant - Summer Love), a happy go lucky kind of guy who no one knows has quite a secret. Peter is in fact the son of Santa Claus and now his secret is going to have to come out as Alex and her family are meeting his his merry parents who do their best to keep who they are a secret but of course struggle, especially with Alex's father trying to put her daughter off of marrying Peter.

I don't know what it is but something about "Merry In-Laws" made me feel like this movie wasn't finished, some sort of vibe which left me feeling that something was missing. I suppose what I am trying to say is that "Merry In-Laws" had all the expected ingredients but when they came together it didn't feel like a very Christmassy movie. In fact at times it felt a bit awkward such as an impromptu scene to music where Alex and Mrs. Claus suddenly cook sugar cookies.

Lucas Bryant in Merry In-Laws (2012)

Now I said "Merry In-Laws" had all the ingredients and it certainly has a lot of them. We have the whole comedy of Peter trying to keep who his parents are under wraps which leads to plenty of chaos, of course with Santa and Mrs. Claus we have some magic. We also have Alex's logical father who doesn't do Christmas and plenty more. But as I said it just doesn't quite come together and often the camera work contributes to that with an amateurish feel to it.

But the one thing which "Merry In-Laws" has is George Wendt and Shelley Long who bring two very different things to the movie and not "Cheers". In the case of George Wendt he brings old fashioned charm, a caring Santa Claus who you could say lives by the ethos of not fretting about the small stuff. And then you have Shelley Long giving it her particular brand of almost pantomime over the top comedy. It is for me what George Wendt and Shelley Long bring to "Merry In-Laws" which saves it as they give the movie plenty of energy and entertainment which it lacks else where.

What this all boils down to is that "Merry In-Laws" is not a bad movie and in truth gets better as it goes on, but for me it feels like it is lacking something and gives it at times a feeling of being unfinished. And if it wasn't for George Wendt and Shelley Long "Merry In-Laws" would not be as okay as it is.

Tags: TV Christmas Movies, Santa Claus, Christmas Movies