“Nick” follows in the tradition of Stones previous biopic’s such as “W” and “The Doors”, but this time he is not taking on a war, a changing era or a political figure, but the powerful and often distressing origins of possibly the world’s most popular cultural yuletide icon. St Nick, or “Santa Clause” to us. We start with Nick’s earliest roots, where he is brought up by his overbearing father, in Patara (now a part of Turkey), from his own personal extradition to the North Pole, in which Nick falls into drugs and alcohol abuse. We are then shown his eventual move to 60’s London where he expresses himself in not only art, but also sexuality. His life looks as though it has hit rock bottom that is until he meets the woman who shows him how to love, “marry” (Theron), and his future mentor “The Easter Bunny” (Freeman).

So is it any good? Well, Brolin’s turn as Ole St Nick is truly one to be remembered, and with the help of prosthetics (and the whopping twelve and half stone, Brolin had to put on to play the part) he truly is uncanny and believable as a young Santa. As always, Stone captures the gritty realism of the environment his characters inhabit. In this case, the droopy pre Christmas pole, a dark and desolate place, where Nick almost completely looses himself. Kudos has to be given to Freeman as “The Easter Bunny” a role that could of easily of been squandered as a typical farther figure cliché, becomes so much more as we are shown a glimpse of “The Bunny’s” own troubled past. The film looses pace at the halfway point, but don’t worry as you may require this time to recover from the utter bewilderment of what you are seeing. Of course no review of this film would be complete without the obligatory mention to the cameo performance that every one is talking about, Al Pachino’s interesting take on “Jesus Christ”. Never before has Jesus been so loud and passive aggressive, and well, we loved it.

Nick is an unusual biopic that often surprises more than it fulfills, and begs the question as to whether Stone may have gone too far this time? (the hugely explicit elf orgy scene comes to mind) But Regardless of this “Nick” is an entertaining watch and the final sequence is so uplifting it will make your journey through this dark and unusual biopic worthwhile.

By Alan Donohoe

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