This Christmas, meet the Ice Cream Bunny. Its feet and hands barely work. Dogs fear it. It dances a constipated little jig. And somehow it is allowed to drive children around. Oh, and nobody has any idea what this abomination has to do with ice cream.
This 1972 kiddie matinee is one puzzling, incoherent little film. Santa and the Ice Cream Bunny promises an "Amazing" story with "Big Trouble" an "Exciting Rescue" and "Fun For All". Instead, it delivers mumbling voice-over, lingering beach shots, and the slowest rescue scene in history. It also offers children jumping off roofs, a gorilla, a cameo by Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn (for no discernible purpose), and a huge chunk of its run time actually devoted to a children's theater production of Thumbelina produced two years earlier (thus also nullifying the claim of being "All New!"). For a wonderfully detailed and hilarious review of the whole terrifying film, visit The Agony Booth.
Of course, none of this is a surprise if you know that the "film" was conceived and shot with no budget over a weekend at the Pirate's World amusement park in Florida, and was produced by nudie cutie master Barry Mahon. And perhaps it was written by the children. Who can say for sure. But one thing is clear: the film's sole purpose was to make a quick buck in the lucrative kiddie matinee market. If only the parents knew exactly what they were forcing their kids to suffer through when they dumped them at the theater, perhaps a few broken spirits could have been avoided.
Needless to say, I love this film with all my withered little heart. I even have the poster hanging in my kitchen, reminding me each morning that miracles DO happen.