The true meaning of Christmas -- desperate last-minute shopping -- is the subject of this holiday-themed comedy. Howard Langston (Arnold Schwarzenegger) is a mattress salesman with a bad habit of putting his work ahead of his family. His… More The true meaning of Christmas -- desperate last-minute shopping -- is the subject of this holiday-themed comedy. Howard Langston (Arnold Schwarzenegger) is a mattress salesman with a bad habit of putting his work ahead of his family. His son Jamie (Jake Lloyd), who wishes Dad would pay more attention to him, wants only one thing for Christmas -- a Turbo Man action figure, with all the accessories. Howard promises both Jamie and his wife Liz (Rita Wilson) that there will indeed be a Turbo Man under the tree for Jamie on Christmas morning, but come December 24, Howard realizes that he hasn't actually bought the toy yet. Seemingly it would be no great problem to head on down to the toy store and pick one up, but it just so happens that Turbo Man has been the hottest ticket of the holiday season, and literally thousands of parents are scrambling for the last few action figures. Howard then spends a hilariously hellish Christmas Eve madly scrambling from store to store in desperate search of a Turbo Man; in the course of his adventures, Howard keeps crossing paths Myron Larabee (Sinbad), a postal worker who wants a Turbo Man even more desperately than Howard. And on the home front, Howard has to worry about Ted Maltin (Phil Hartman), an annoyingly perfect suburbanite obsessed with Christmas who has eyes for Liz. This was the second film for child actor Jake Lloyd, who three years later would gain international attention when he was cast as the young Anakin Skywalker in Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace. ~ Mark Deming, Rovi
Consensus: Arnold Schwarzenegger tries his best, but Jingle All the Way suffers from an uneven tone, shifting wildly from a would-be satire on materialism to an antic, slapstick yuk-fest.