Spencer and his little sister, Katherine, are flying to Pennsylvania for Christmas with their dad. While changing planes, a blizzard moves in and cancels all flights out of Hoover Airport: they must stay in a basement room with the other unaccompanied minors. Spencer and four others - a chubby boy, a non-stop-talker, a surly girl, and a rich kid - go AWOL and get in trouble with Mr. Porter, the Christmas-hating airport supervisor. The five misfits spend the night evading and enduring Porter's punishments, discovering all sorts of things in back rooms, making sure Katherine gets her visit from Santa, and finding among themselves a new kind of family. Written by
At one point, the kids and Zach (Wilmer Valderrama) go down the side of a mountain in a canoe. On _That '70s Show (1998)_, there is an episode where three characters, including Fez (played by Wilmer Valderrama) want to go down a mountain in a canoe. See more »
When Sam's car explodes, the tree is no longer visible through the windshield. See more »
It's not a masterpiece, it's not pretending it is, but it's fairly well written, with good characters for leads and the actors give their share, like good actors do when they're given good roles to act. It avoids almost entirely cartoonish characters, restricting them to the third or even fourth tiers. In fact the movie surprises with some unexpected depth at moments were a cheesy joke would've been easier. Very little slapstick, limited to specific scenes which call for some physical humor. And apart from some excess saccharine and cliché at moments, there's some solid story telling here, which I always appreciate. The two leading kids Gia (Gina) Mantegnia and Dylan Christopher got the looks and the talent to be going places if they just conduct themselves right. Lewis Black takes a cartoon villain and makes him human, and Paget Brewster and Teri Garr present some lovely background cartoons that complete a surprisingly nice movie.
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