** Prancer (1989)

Cineplex-Odeon Films, Nelson Entertainment, Raffaella Productions

Sam Elliott, Cloris Leachman, Rutanya Alda, Abe Vigoda, Michael Constantine, Rebecca harrell, John Duda, Ariana Richards, Mark Ralston

Jessica (Rebecca Harrell) is the daughter of a poor hardworking farmer (Sam Elliott).  She witnesses Prancer fall from the Christmas display in town, and then later discovers a real reindeer with a hurt leg.  She naturally assumes this is Prancer, and hides him in the barn so he can recover.  She cons the local vet (Abe Vigoda) to patch Prancer, and then Jessica sets out to keep him hidden from her father.  But the secret is not going to be kept forever, and when her father finds out, he wants to sell Prancer and Jessica isn’t happy with that plan.

This was a very popular film when it came out in the late 80’s, but it seems to have disappeared.  I was glad to see it come back on TV this year, as it’s a charming story.  The movie doesn’t depend on special effects or grand lavish sets, but rather on the characters themselves.  Jessica is fabulous as the little girl who still believes in magic, and Sam Elliott as John Riggs is a great tough but caring Dad.  He’s really harsh to Jessica at times, and seems really mean, but he’s not really.  He wants only the best for her.  In the end, both father and daughter learn that they only have each other and they have to make it work somehow.  Only then can they get it together.

A very strong story and one that is especially nice to watch just before Christmas.  Very well done, and a strong cast makes it really work.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog



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