“Santa’s Little Helper” is a direct to DVD film produced by WWE Studios (World Wrestling Entertainment Studios). No, it’s not a wrestling themed movie, although two of the company’s wrestlers, Mike “The Miz” Mizanin (The Marine 4: Moving Target) and WWE Diva, Paige, in her screen debut, are in the movie. The film is a pleasant, silly, family oriented comedy, that parents can watch with their children and not have to worry about covering eyes and ears from any inappropriate scenes. (As an aside: former WWE Diva, Maryse Ouellet, who is the real life wife of Mizanin, makes a cameo appearance in the film).
At the start of the film Dax ‘The Ax,’ played by Mizanin, is a business man who is interested in only one thing – making money. He doesn’t care who he has to step on, or in the case of the Hope Springs Youth Center, that he delivers foreclosure papers to, whose dreams he has to crush, in order to advance in his own career. Dax has a fast sports car, a brand new house, and is in line for a promotion that will further elevate his financial standing. The only problem is, after dropping off the foreclosure papers, when he returns to his office, he is told by his boss, Lane, (Ben Wilkinson) that he is being fired. The reason being, there is another equally driven employee in the office, who can not only do their own job, but states they can do Dax’s work as well, for the same pay. Lane also lets Dax know that he isn’t exactly the most popular person around the office. The news doesn’t sit well with Dax, who pleads his case, and uses the same “but it’s almost Christmas” line that the woman who runs the youth center (Karen Holness) gave him, which he, earlier, easily dismissed. Lane is not moved, and after a confrontation, Dax is not merely escorted, but thrown out of the office.
In less than an hour Dax has no job, his company car gets repossessed, and Tonya, his girlfriend, who was only with him because of his money, leaves him, as soon as she finds out he was fired. He makes phone calls to other companies, but nobody is interested in even meeting with him, let alone giving him a job. What is Dax going to do? His opportunity to get his life back on track, will come, unbeknownst, at first to him, from the most unlikely source, Santa Claus, portrayed by Eric Keenleyside (Once Upon A Time). Kris Kringle needs a new second in command, and for reasons that are not made clear to the viewer at the start, thinks Dax is up to the task. Standing in his way, however, will not only be a series of tests, that are administered by AnnaLynne McCord’s (90210) character Billie, but also Paige, who plays Eleanor the Elf. Eleanor’s father has had the job for the past two hundred years and is looking to retire. She thinks the position is rightfully hers for the taking.
A short while later, Dax’s hears a consistent knocking on his front door; when he opens it, standing before him is Harvey (Tom McLaren) from True National Mortgage. He is there to inform Dax that unless he pays the past due amount on his mortgage, the bank is going to immediately foreclose on his house, it is just a matter of getting the paper work finished. Returning to his living room, Dax again hears knocking on his door. Thinking it is Harvey, returning to deliver more bad news, Dax is pleasantly surprised when he opens the door to find McCord’s character, Billie. She doesn’t come right out and tell Dax that it is Santa Claus who is interested in hiring him. Instead she is ambiguous, stating that she represents a high profile individual who needs to immediately fill an important position. She is there on the employer’s behalf to see if Dax has what it takes to get the job. For Dax, who considers himself a lone-wolf, and is a self-centered individual, proving that he has what Santa is looking for: someone who possess humility, a level headed temper for conflict resolution, a person who can inspire others, a kind soul, and a cooperative nature, isn’t going to be easy. Will Dax pass the tests and get to travel back to the North Pole to secure the position as Santa’s second in command? Even if he does, what will Eleanor do in order to keep that from becoming a reality?
“Santa’s Little Helper” has a runtime of 91 minutes, and was released on November 17, 2015. The film was directed by Emmy nominee, Gil Junger (Ellen). The script for the movie was written by James Robert Johnston (The Howling: Reborn) and Bennett Yellin (Dumb & Dumber). All in all, it is a film, as I stated at the beginning, that parents can watch with their children, or won’t have to worry about leaving the room, so their children can watch it by themselves. The movie provides an alternative to those who have already had their fill of the traditional Christmas classics such as Rudolph, Frosty, and the Grinch, or who are just looking for something new, that is light-hearted to watch this holiday season.