The Ultimate Christmas Present. Baby’s first Christmas DCOM. The incomparable BRENDA SONG’S first DCOM!! She plays best friend Samantha to Hallee Hirsch’s Allie. If you want to hear from Hallee Hirsch, she was on A.J. Trauth and Christopher Marquette’s podcast The Coogan Chronicles this year. Brenda Song continues to act, recently co-starring in Dollface and headlining a rom-com called Love Accidentally.
These two played middle school girls on the brink of their Christmas break in 2000. Samantha is more of a rule-follower, but Allie is a bad influence and is naturally mischievous. A cute kid named Blake is having a Christmas party, and Allie is focused on what she’ll be wearing for the event. As any Christmas DCOM fan knows, Allie and Samantha find their way to Santa’s Los Angeles headquarters (that’s a new one!), where Allie steals St. Nick’s weather machine. By bringing snow to sunny LA, she can get out of school earlier and avoid writing an essay.
I love the cast of this film. In addition to Brenda Song and Hallee Hirsch — who won Young Artist Awards for their work — we’ve got Hallie Todd as the mom, Spencer Breslin as little brother Joey, the late Peter Scolari as the greedy weatherman, and two all-star elves: former NBA champion John Salley, and the Patrick Star voice actor Bill Fagerbakke (who was also Harold the mummy in the original Under Wraps). Greg Beeman directed this DCOM after Under Wraps and Brink!
Though this film got mixed reviews, The Ultimate Christmas Present is a holiday tradition I value. Aside from the nostalgic charm, I’ve come to appreciate what makes this movie unique: It’s not everyday that a DCOM protagonist is a troublemaker — Allie is on Santa’s naughty list until she has a change of heart. When her wacky weather fiasco turns into a full-blown blizzard and her father might not have a way to get home for Christmas, Allie realizes that family is more important than breaking rules to miss school. Hallie Todd perfectly comforts the kids on Christmas morning. Santa and the elves help bring Dad home for a Christmas family snowball fight, and Edwin the weatherman has a new lease on life. He follows his dream all the way to the South Pole.