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STUDIO: Warner Home Video
RUNNING TIME: 23 min
It’s a little bit Fat Albert and a little bit Peanuts
Marlon Wayans, Shawn Wayans, Kim Wayans, David Alan Grier, Charlie Murphy
D-Roc and his crew are getting ready for Christmas and debating whether or not Santa Claus really exists. Their squabbles become rather insignificant when they learn that little Gavin’s family are having financial problems and he might not have a Christmas at all.
The Wayans Family has proved over and over that when they release a movie they are reaching for the lowest common denominator. Whether it is the horror spoofs of the Scary Movie franchise or the drek of films such as White Girls and Little Man, their movies really don’t inspire much in the way of creativity.
Originally titled, Thugaboo: A Miracle on D-Roc’s Street, A Boo Crew Christmas Special first appeared on Nickelodeon and Nicktoons networks. When speaking about the movie, Shawn Wayans has stated that he and his brothers created the Boo Crew series to give their own children something that is both educational and multicultural at the same time.
The final result is a mixture of good children’s television and unoriginal ideas. For kids, this is a good story with a good moral core. D-Roc and his friends began the movie debating whether or not there was a Santa Claus. While at the mall, most of his friends are excited to sit on Santa’s lap and tell him what they want for Christmas, but D-Roc explains that their parents are just pretending to be Santa Claus and it is all one big hoax.
They are interrupted by the sight of a poor young boy named Gavin who sits on Santa’s lap and asks for presents for his parents and only one toy for himself. He explains that his dad lost his job and needs help more than he needs more gifts. He finishes by giving Santa a small present before leaving. This blows the kids away and they realize that giving just might be better than receiving.
The characters are a hodgepodge mixture of more popular icons from other cartoons. There is a character that mimics the talking style of Mushmouth from Fat Albert. There is also a character that seems to be a version of Pigpen from the Peanuts cartoons. I could not watch Gavin without immediately thinking of Tiny Tim from A Christmas Carol. I almost expected him to yell, “God bless us, everyone!” at the end. The twist here is that all the characters live in a hip-hop culture.
What works well about the characters is that they are of a multicultural diversity. There are Hispanic, White, Black, Asian all together with no mention whatsoever of race or discrimination. The movie is a simple children’s tale with no implications to anything except trying to do the right thing regardless of economic barriers.
While the story is a cliché, I believe it is a great tale for young children, which is to who it is geared for. I had large doubts about how this DVD would turn out, but surprisingly the Wayans Family won me over. Maybe if they left grown up movies to grown up filmmakers and concentrated on the children’s audience they might actually turn out to be somewhat relevant. If you have a young child, this DVD would be a nice rental for them this Holiday season.
The look and sound is pretty good, but this is a 23 minute cartoon with no extra features for almost $15. No matter how nice the story is, and no matter how good it looks and sounds, it ain’t worth that much money.
4.9 out of 10