I Believe in Santa ending explained – why does Lisa hate Christmas?

By Lori Meek
Published: December 14, 2022

We discuss the ending of the Netflix film I Believe in Santa, which will contain spoilers.

Written by John DuceyI Believe in Santa is a new Netflix original Christmas movie meant to bring some holiday cheer to its subscribers. The film centers on the romantic relationship between single mom Lisa (Christina Moore) and Tom (Ducey). While the first few months of dating are something out of a fairy tale, Lisa starts doubting this relationship when she learns that her new beau is not only obsessed with Christmas but also truly believes Santa is real. 

I Believe in Santa ending explained – why does Lisa hate Christmas?

By the time we reach the third act, Lisa has just about had enough of Tom’s obsession with Santa’s Christmas. When she asks to skip one of the super fun activities he’d planned, he refuses to take no for an answer, leading to the woman putting her foot down and deciding to part ways. We also finally learn the real reason for Lisa’s hatred of Christmas. It turns out that as a seven-year-old, she’d found the Barbie doll her parents planned to give her as a Christmas present in their closet. In retaliation, Lisa’s parents decided to punish their daughter by not giving her any gifts that year, not even the Barbie she’d previously seen. And that’s why she hates the holiday and likely has no contact with her family, who are only mentioned this one time throughout the whole movie. 

Of course, their separation doesn’t last long before Lisa goes crawling back to Tom for help after Ella’s deadbeat dad, Robert, lets her down yet again days before they were supposed to take part in a cardboard box sledding race. Tom being Tom, is more than happy to build the sled for Ella and help her win. On the day of the race, Tom’s surprised to see Freckles and his dad are also competing. Who’s Freckles, you might ask? A nine (?) year old child who happens to be Tom’s nemesis. Yes, a grown man has a very unhealthy and very inappropriate rivalry with a child. We don’t know how this conflict happened. The two aren’t related in any way. By all accounts, Tom and this child are complete strangers. Yet every winter they get into a bizarre snowball war. To no one’s surprise, Tom, Ella, and Lisa win the race. 

After the race, everyone goes for some hot cocoa. In the cafe, Lisa cancels her and Tom’s break-up, but he has an even better idea. That’s right, Tom gets down on one knee and proposes. She says yet and Ella reveals what she really asked Santa: For Tom and her mom to get married. Thus, giving undeniable proof that Santa is indeed as real as you and me. 

The magic is not over yet. On Christmas morning, Ella excitedly opens a present she found under the tree and finds an iPhone! We already knew Lisa was firmly against getting her 8-year-old child a smartphone. But Santa is not only real, but also cares very little for poor Lisa’s attempts at parenting her child and, you know, setting rules. 

What did you think of the ending of the Netflix film I Believe in Santa? Comment below.

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