It seems that original (and good) holiday movies have been a little hard to come by lately. Sure, there’s ‘Elf’ and ‘Klaus’, but beyond that, we’ve generally seen yet another variation on ‘A Christmas Carol’ (as good as ‘Spirited’ is) or some other generic schlock. Enter ‘Candy Cane Lane’, a super-fun and entertaining flick written by Kelly Younger (TV’s ‘Muppets Haunted Mansion’). Starring Eddie Murphy and Tracee Ellis Ross, it tells the tale of a laid-off dad who makes a deal with a nefarious elf (Jillian Bell) to win his neighborhood decorating contest. Full of cheer and smart comedy, it’s an inventive hit right out of the gate and is sure to be a part of your annual festivities for years to come.

4/5 stars