A 1985 film from the producers of the first three ''Film/{{Superman}}'' movies (and the director of ''{{Film/Supergirl}}''), starring Creator/DudleyMoore as one of Santa's elves and Creator/JohnLithgow as a CorruptCorporateExecutive who seeks to commercialize Santa's Christmas magic. [[Film/TheBigLebowski David Huddleston]] is Santa, but doesn't get [[BilledAboveTheTitle above-the-title billing]] despite playing the title character. The film's first act presents an origin story for Santa and proceeds to follow the growth of his legend over the centuries. The remainder of the film takes place in the PresentDay. While Santa befriends a StreetUrchin and another girl in New York City, the aforementioned elf Patch -- after screwing up one Christmas with an ill-fated attempt to bring an automated production system to the workshop -- heads to the Big Apple himself and falls in with the sinister toy mogul B.Z.

Not to be confused with the Mexican film ''Film/SantaClaus1959''.
----
!!The film provides examples of:

* AwardBaitSong: "Christmas All Over the World".
* BadSanta: The drunken Salvation Army-type Santa.
* BetaOutfit: The elves make his suit, but MrsClaus doesn't think green works. When red is suggested, everyone enthusiastic, as it goes with Santa's rosy cheeks.
* BigDamnHeroes: This may be the only movie where ''North Pole Reindeer'' get this moment.
* BigLippedAlligatorMoment: Even by the somewhat nonsensical standards of the movie's second half, The Patchmobile Launch is patently bizarre. From the silly launch sequence, to B.Z. and staff cheering Patch ENTIRELY too long for the segment, to Patch yelling "YAHOO!" as he launches (in a voice completely different than Moore's, and utterly out of character for the low key inventor elf)... it's just a very, very surreal sequence to observe.
* BilledAboveTheTitle: David Huddleston doesn't get it, but it's justified here, as part of the original marketing (such as the original making-of program shown on ABC in the lead-up to the movie's release) stressed that Santa Claus was essentially playing himself, and that no actor could do him justice. And though his billing isn't at the top of the cast list proper, he ''is'' the first performer listed/shown in the end credits.
* BrokenAesop: Puffy's approach (quality with careful craftsmanship) is shown to be superior to Patch's approach (mass production with no quality control), yet Patch is couched as the hero, and Puffy as a minor antagonist.
* CassandraTruth: Subverted with Cornelia. She thinks the police don't believe her warning, but, given their response, they obviously do.
* ChekhovsGunman: Patch.
* ChekhovsSkill: The Super Duper Looper, a special reindeer flying maneuver that Santa's team has never ''quite'' been able to pull off.
* ChewingTheScenery: John Lithgow, with a knife and fork.
* TheChosenOne: Santa is actually called this.
* ChristmasElves: Of course.
* CorruptCorporateExecutive: B.Z.
* DidntThinkThisThrough: B.Z., on a couple of occasions.
** In one case, he plans to mark his magic candy canes for hundreds of dollars. When asked where kids will get that kind of money, he says he doesn't care; he'll just sell the item and watch the money come rolling in. A fundamental rule of economics: if your target audience can't afford the product, they won't buy it. End of discussion.
** B.Z.'s plan to avoid the authorities by fleeing to Brazil. One small problem. Depending on the scope of his marketing, Brazil may not have an extradition agreement with the U.S., but it might have one with some country where B.Z. has marketed his goods. Secondly, depending on how successful his marketing is (and whether he can overcome the flaw mentioned above), his product could end up killing a significant number of the children (and a fair number of adults) in the country. Obviously, this movie was made before 9/11, but in hindsight, it is clear that, especially in the wake of a tragedy that could dwarf 9/11, the U.S. wouldn't let such niceties as extradition treaties (or lack thereof) stop them from taking down B.Z. by any means necessary.
** Ultimately, considering the end result of B.Z.'s attempt to evade arrest, he obviously didn't think that one through.
* DisneyVillainDeath: Inverted. [[spoiler:B.Z. instead flies up to his doom after eating the candy canes to evade the police.]]
* DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything: B.Z.'s plan to charge astronomical fees for his magic candy canes, not caring where kids get the money, sounds a lot like an [[TheAggressiveDrugDealer Aggressive Drug Dealer]].
* EvilUncle: B.Z. to Cornelia, sort of. He treats her pretty well, but he is evil and her uncle. She notes in her first scene, before their relationship is revealed, that she doesn't see him much ("He probably doesn't know what grade I'm in").
** It's also played with in that he's not related to her by blood, but is her step-uncle.
* FishOutOfTemporalWater: Most of the elves seem to be living in the ancient past, utterly aware of the outside world or how times have changed. Notably averted with Patch, who seems to be aware of modern technology such as television and indoor heating.
* FishOutOfWater: Patch, in New York.
* ForTheEvulz: ''B.Z.''
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: B.Z. exclaims "shit!" under his breath when Joe bites him near the end of the film. Presumably this wasn't audible enough to be considered a problem or noticed by the censors, but it's easier to tell on the home video releases where it can be rewound.
* HollywoodLaw: B.Z. plans to flee to Brazil to escape prosecution, given that Brazil had no extradition treaty with the U.S.. Two problems: 1) At the time of the movie, Brazil had an extradition treaty with the U.S. for twenty years (and, for the present-day sequence, this is not meant to be a PeriodPiece); and 2) lack of an extradition treaty doesn't prevent a country from voluntarily extradititing a fugitive, particularly if the fugitive is a foreign national (and if the U.S. puts on the pressure).
* HowCanSantaDeliverAllThoseToys: Santa is gifted with the ability to hold sway over time, so Christmas Eve doesn't end until he finishes his job.
* InnocentInaccurate: The reason Patch decides to throw in his lot with B.Z. He arrives in New York City and sees a display of B.Z.'s toys in a store window -- and assumes that the store employees clearing out the lot are doing so because they're popular. It's actually because they're all being recalled. When B.Z. realizes that Patch doesn't know about his corrupt ways and legal problems, he makes sure that Patch can't find out the truth.
* KarmaHoudini: When you get down to it, Patch is to blame for the catastrophic Christmas delivery and somewhat to blame for the mess caused in the second half of the movie. Yet he's never punished for any of it.
* LargeHam: B.Z.
--> '''B.Z.:''' For FREEEEEEEEE!!!!???!?!?!!?!?!?
--> '''B.Z.:''' We'll call it... '''''CHRISTMAS 2!!!!!!'''''
--> '''B.Z.:''' Santa Claus... is FINISHED!
* LaserGuidedKarma: Towser and Grizzard are both arrested for the kidnapping. B.Z. avoids this fate, for a worse one.
* LeftHanging: The ending doesn't resolve several outstanding conflicts:
** What's Patch's role rejoining the team? Puffy presumably is still Santa's Assistant.
** Did Cornelia have a home to come back to? Her uncle seems to have been her benefactor and he's dead.
** Is Joe homeless when he returns to New York in a year?
** Santa's name is still mud after the disastrous Christmas Delivery halfway through the movie. Any redemption is never shown.
* MadeOfExplodium: The second batch of candy canes, if they get too hot (owing to the larger quantity of stardust, which is best kept cold, in them).
* MrsClaus
* MsFanservice: The dancers and singers for Patch's commercial are just a step below Vegas Showgirls.
* MyLittlePanzer: Every toy B.Z.'s company made, including a teddy bear stuffed with sawdust and construction nails. (Most of these, like the bear, seem to be ForTheEvulz given that they would cost more than just doing it right.)
* NeverTrustATrailer: Opening with an iconic view of Capitol Hill, the British trailer for this movie makes it seem like a story about corporate corruption and politics, with Santa having a minor part at best. (By comparison, the full-length U.S. trailer presents it as the cinematic-''Film/{{Superman}}''-meets-Christmas adventure (It actually is.)
* NewTechnologyIsEvil: Mass-producing toys is bad for elves to do.
** It could just as easily be seen as a lesson on the need for consistent quality control practices and machinery maintenance.
* NiceJobBreakingItHero: Patch, from his appointment as Santa's assistant until his rescue of Joe.
** Quite literally, too; his inventions tending to work for a while and then break down is how he keeps screwing up.
* NotNowKiddo: Subverted. See CassandraTruth.
* OnlyKnownByTheirNickname: B.Z.
* OnlyOneName: Everyone except Towser.
* PeripheryDemographic: In-universe. The magic lollipops are marketed to kids, but it seems some adults like them even more.
* ProductPlacement: For Coca-Cola and [=McDonald's=]. The latter had several giveaway premiums -- storybooks and [[http://www.etsy.com/listing/113455271/vintage-mcdonalds-1985-plush-reindeer reindeer ornaments,]] of which this troper still has two.
* PunchClockVillain: Both ways with B.Z.'s henchmen. Played straight with the {{Adorkable}} toady, Towser, who doesn't seem malicious, just weak-willed. Inverted with Grizzard, who is a [[TheDragon genuinely mean bastard]].
* SavingChristmas
* SantaClaus: It's in the title, after all.
* SmugSnake: B.Z.
* StockSoundEffects: The Patchmobile makes the [[Franchise/{{Batman}} Batwing]] noise in the climax.
* StreetUrchin: Joe.
* StupidEvil: B.Z.
* WhenItAllBegan: The first part of the story.
* WrongGenreSavvy: Cornelia tells Santa she called the police to warn them about B.Z.'s candy canes and Joe's kidnapping, but she doesn't think they believed her. Apparently, they did, because they try to arrest him shortly afterward.
** Probably because they believed Joe had been kidnapped, and child kidnapping isn't taken lightly by the NYPD at all.
* YourSizeMayVary: The elves vary between a few feet tall to normal humans but a bit short.

----