Picks and Pans Review: Jack Frost

updated 12/15/1986 at 01:00 AM EST

originally published 12/15/1986 01:00AM

Let's see if we've got this straight. Pardon-Me-Pete, the groundhog, sees his shadow on the appointed day, which means there will be six more weeks of winter. The reason he sees it, even though there is no sun, is the transparent premise of this 60-minute snow job. Jack Frost, that invisible sprite who ices up your windowpanes (and car-door locks), has made a deal with Pete: If the lazy rodent will pretend to see his shadow every year to delay the start of spring, J.F. will let him sleep longer. This stop-action-animation tape gets more complicated. Frost has fallen in love with a maiden named Elissa and begs his boss, Father Winter, to allow him to become human. When the old windbag grumbles that no one wants to really know Jack Frost, he's not just blowing hot air. Nonetheless, Frost wrangles a winter-long leave, heads for Elissa's hometown of January Junction and starts to court her without giving her that left-cold feeling. In between, such characters as Snip the Snowflake Maker, Holly the Holiday Snowflake gypsy, the Sleet Sisters and Hail Fellow meander on screen. Kubler Krauss, the evil Cossack, terrorizes the poor citizenry with his mechanical army and is also in love with Elissa. To round out this love square, Sir Ravinel, literally a knight in shining armor, battles Krauss too. It all sounds completely baffling, but the 7-year-old half of this reviewing team found it made perfectly good sense. Produced originally for television, this video includes music that won't end up on the list of enduring Christmas songs. The Animagic business doesn't help. Even with such voice talents as Buddy Hackett and Robert Morse, Jack Frost is skating on thin ice. (Lightning Video, $29.95)

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