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Reviews » DVD Video Reviews » Christmas Caper
Christmas Caper
First Run Features // PG // October 28, 2008
List Price: $24.98 [Buy now and save at Amazon]
Review by Jeffrey Robinson | posted November 12, 2008 | E-mail the Author
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The Movie

Christmas Caper is a made for television movie from ABC Family, which aired in November 2007. It is a low budget, family feel-good about a female thief who goes on the run after a heist goes wrong. She returns to her small hometown to hide out. While in her hometown, she remembers what it means to have family, good friends, and happy holidays. Overall, Christmas Caper is a decent movie. It is not terrible, but it is not good either. It is the kind of movie that if you never see, your life will be just as good. The bottom line, unless you are looking to expand your Christmas movie options, skip it.

Kate (Shannen Doherty) is a big city thief. While on her latest heist, she is betrayed by her partner. He takes the loot and leaves her to be caught by the police. Kate rushes to her department-store-employee-wannabe-criminal Duffy (Michael P. Northey) and brainstorms her next step. At the same time, Kate's sister is stuck in the Bahamas (bad weather). Unfortunately, it is Christmas week and the babysitter doesn't want to stay with the kids Parker (Josh Hayden) and Annie (Natasha Calis). Kate's sister tries to find someone, but only Kate is available. Kate reluctantly agrees to take care of the kids.

When Kate arrives at the house, she proposes a deal with the kids to leave each other alone. Parker is an up and coming troublemaker and quickly agrees. Annie, on the other hand, is stickler for the rules and demands that Kate act like a real babysitter. Kate slowly warms up to the kids. She teaches Parker some bad things and realizes the importance of responsibility (thanks to Annie's persistence and Parker getting in some trouble).

Kate also runs into a couple faces from her past. The first person is Hank (Ty Olsson). He was her high school sweetheart and the one person she ever really cared about. For various reasons, they broke up and never saw each other after high school. Kate disappeared right after graduation. Hank also happens to be the local sheriff, which causes tension for Kate, as she is on the run from the big city cops. Kate also befriends former drill team member Holly (Stefanie von Pfetten), who she used to tease in high school.

As the story continues, Kate is faced with some dilemmas. She realizes the importance of family, friends, and the holidays. At the same time, she is focused on making money. She plans a neighborhood Christmas party with Hank, Holly, Parker, and Annie; during the party she plans to steal everyone's presents if she can't get her share of the loot from her backstabbing partner. Of course, Kate's conscious takes over when she starts to feel something for everyone around her.

Christmas Caper is not the most inventive movie. The storyline is sparse and predictable. The acting performances are also nothing special. Doherty is horribly unconvincing in her role as a thief, but good with her poor attitude about being back in her hometown. The other characters are not special either. The younger cast members do a decent job and Duffy can be a funny (yet over the top) at times. Overall, Christmas Caper is pretty light on entertainment. But as mentioned in the beginning of the review, it is not a terrible movie. For what it is, Christmas Caper is a decent watch. For those looking for a family-oriented holiday film, then it will make for a good rental. Everyone else will want to skip it.

The DVD

Video:
The video is given in 1.75:1 ratio widescreen color format. For the most part, the picture quality looks pretty good. There is a grain in the video and it is noticeable throughout the feature.

Audio:
The audio is given in two English formats, Dolby Digital 5.1 and Dolby Stereo 2.0. The surround sound audio track is overkill, as the feature is dialogue drive. Still, the tracks come off fairly rich and vibrant. There are also subtitles in English and Spanish.

Extras:
There are no extras included with this DVD release.

Final Thoughts:
Christmas Caper is a decent made for television movie starring Shannen Doherty. The movie has a few decent moments, which will appeal to those looking for a new holiday movie. However, unless you are out of options and tired of the same Christmas movies, Christmas Caper is not worth the time. It will make for a rental at best, but I say skip it.

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