Rated: G

Distributed By:

Walt Disney

Directed by:

Robert Vince

Starring:

Cheryl Ladd as Mrs. Clause; Danny Woodburn as Eli; voice of Richard Kind as Eddy the Elf Dog

Adapted From:

Santa Paws 2: The Santa Pups

Santa Claus’ canine pal, Santa Paws, is the proud father of four mischievous puppies—Hope, Jingle, Charity and Noble. Growing up fast, the puppies are eager for greater responsibilities, but their elders insist that responsibility is something that must be earned. So when Mrs. Claus goes to Pineville to help rekindle its Christmas cheer, the puppies stow away in the sled to help her. But what begins as an effort to prove themselves soon leads the puppies into a heap of mischief and trouble.

For the most part, these paws are clean. You won’t find a lot of potty humor or name-calling. But there are some potential concerns for impressionable children. A shoving match occurs between two boys, and a couple of characters use the words “loser” and “stupid.” A subtler problem, however, is the way characters undermine authority, often without serious consequence. In the end, the puppies seem to genuinely learn their lesson and show their remorse by saying, “We made a big mistake.”

Christian beliefs around the holidays receive some good exposure. Children are said to be “a blessing,“ and characters sing several biblically-themed Christmas songs. (“O Holy Night” in particular plays a prominent role.) A family also prays together before a meal, and it is suggested that a girl’s deceased mother is in heaven, “singing with angels.”

The holiday worldview is a mixed bag, however, with magic playing a key role. The story’s premise centers around the North Pole’s reliance on enchanted crystals powered by “Christmas spirit” to grant wishes. And one boy’s wish has the effect of casting a spell over his neighbors. Magical elements like these will be a problem for some Christian families. But at its heart, Santa Paws 2 is a movie about the importance of hope, forgiveness and family . . . and it features cute, talking puppies to boot.

Copyright © 2012 by Focus on the Family. Used by permission. Clubhousemagazine.com