Can Kurt Russell save our TV Christmas? It’s not even Thanksgiving yet, but that won’t stop the networks from unleashing their annual parade of treacly holiday entertainments.
Russell, whose career began when he was 11 doing TV guest spots on shows such as “Dennis the Menace” and “Lost in Space,” has something different in store with “The Christmas Chronicles,” out on Netflix Nov. 22. He plays a hip, no-nonsense Santa whose sleigh crashes on Christmas Eve, thanks to the chicanery of two smart alecks, Teddy Pierce (Judah Lewis) and his sister, Kate (Darby Camp). Now he needs their help in meeting his gift-delivering deadline.
Some viewers may blanch to see Russell, 67, is playing Kris Kringle. It’s going to have those who remember Russell as Elvis in that 1979 TV movie reaching for the AARP cards, but what can you do? At least he’s not trying to play action heroes like his peers Sylvester Stallone and Liam Neeson. Judging by the trailer, Russell plays the part with panache.