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Thursday, December 10, 2020

Dear Santa

Director: Dana Nachman

Studio: IFC Films

Dear Santa spreads holiday cheer to both children and families.

Everybody knows the song, “Santa Claus is Coming to Town,” because children and families become more and more desperate to find out about Santa's existence. But to make this simple and clear, there are always city communities who are always helpful to fulfill the children and families’ wishes on having a wonderful Christmas. Dear Santa is a documentary feature film that tells a tale about the U.S. Postal Service serving as the primary focus in the film, setting up a goal to fulfill for children’s Christmas wishes.

Dear Santa explains focusly on the light on the 100-year-old ‘Operation Santa’ Program of the United States Postal Service. Every year, thousands of letters to Santa arrive at Post Offices around the country. Through Operation Santa, the United States Postal Service makes it possible for the public to safely adopt these letters and make children’s dreams come true. Traveling the country, much like Santa does on Christmas Eve, this documentary film focuses on the selected ‘Operation Santa’ Centers in metropolitan areas, including New York City, and others in small and big towns where the Post Office becomes the heart of the community.

Nachman, who is an experienced documentary filmmaker, gathers large usages of footage being taken and given from children as well as interviewing them and families about their Christmas history, past and present. Nachman not only films the entire film scene by scene from other cities, and documents the children’s scenes, but also captures the messages on how children would respond to these situations to determine whether Santa is real or not. Nachman knows how to record and interview each family about their Christmas histories with children, but on the inside, she knows how to handle these small situations and the horrible crisis up in her sleeve. Even when she makes lots of impossible moves the director and the postal workers in the film have done as means to say, “nothing is impossible.”

The scenes, the editing, and the plot focusing on the children add a touching empathy feel as children serve as the principal meaning on how the holidays are celebrated. Nachman guides the children and teachers on what they like to have that can make their dreams come true. Not just to make children's lives easier to understand the existence of Santa and the importance of the holidays, but she also gives the same moral lessons to adults in general. She basically tells the audiences and families how to give their children and themselves the best Christmas gift they ever receive without ruining their hopes and dreams as well as bringing some cheer for children and adults for the holidays and during the COVID pandemic as well.

Dear Santa is a good documentary movie. I really enjoyed reading and watching the moral lessons and messages the director and the film gave to teach people how to make a difference in different parts of the world. This film is a good choice for children and families just to bring some holiday cheer during Christmastime and the ongoing pandemic. It's a whole new American film that embodies the spirit, the struggle, and the demise of the new “holiday” frontier. Just to let the viewers know that this film clocks in about nearly eighty-four minutes.


(Review by Henry Pham)

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