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'Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas' is an unholy mess

 'Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas' is an unholy mess
Kirk Cameron and Darren Doane in "Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas." (CAMFAM Studios)

Although the film's title and posters of its star heroically brandishing a giant candy cane might suggest a holiday romp summoning the ghost of "Growing Pains" past, "Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas" has other random ideas.

An unholy mess co-produced by Cameron's faith-based Camfam Studios, the movie begins with a fireside chat in which the genial star shares his love of everything Christmas while addressing the naysayers who insist Dec. 25 has lost its meaning.

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One of the disillusioned is Kirk's dour brother-in-law, Christian (played by the director, Darren Doane), so Cameron spends most of the film in his car, schooling him in the "real" biblical connection to Christmas trees, Santa and more, aided by some dramatic re-creations.

Sermon concluded, Cameron steps down from his front-seat pulpit and the two rejoin the family Christmas bash, just in time to join in a hip-hop performance of "Angels Have We Heard on High."

Virtually everything about this production feels thrown together. Even with that extended musical interlude (performed by the God Squad Dance Crew) and an end-credits blooper reel, the package barely cracks the 80-minute mark.

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"Kirk Cameron's Saving Christmas."

MPAA rating: None.

Running time: 1 hour, 20 minutes.

Playing: In general release.

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