Director: Lewis Jackson
Run time: 100 minutes
Harry works at Jolly Dream, a toy factory, his coworkers take him for granted, taunt and abuse him. Harry's patience shoots off the scale after he recognizes corporate hypocrisy in relation to gifting ('retarded' - yea a regularly used word in the 80's and still in the Cult household) kids at a local hospital. Taking matters into his own hands he decides to don a Santa suit and right some wrongs starting with taking all of the (cheap Asian) toys the factory produces to the hospital ridden children. (Yea Chintzy foreign crap!)
He encounters a group of drunken revelers while congratulating himself after his charitable delivery. His psyche shifts abruptly (I would say Postal but wouldn't wish to be sued by folks that drive around in tiny trucks with the steering wheel on the wrong side) he proceeds to swing an ax as easily as it were a sack of toys disabling a handful of persons merriment for the remainder of the evening.
Panic ensues in the community.
A newscaster is noted as announcing avoid anyone in a Santa costume (like that's gonna happen) as the local authorities drag crowds of white bearded fellows in for questioning and (in a priceless scene) a parade of lineups.
Say 'Merry Christmas'.
No, no, no. Not like that, with enthusiasm, like you mean it!
Meanwhile Harry's brother, Jeffrey DeMunn (The Green Mile, The Mist) is beside himself with worry as he knows his sibling has a difficult time around the season (if only he knew) His brother had very recently broken a cardinal Xmas rule don't ever attempt to clamber down a chimney with a bag of goodies no matter how stunning the movies make it appear and how traditional it might in fact be. As often happens in any social Holiday season family gathering there's a elongated moment of awkwardness, partly due to a choking incident, as the pair reunite.
Whoops - would ya' look at that I've almost (very nearly, but not quite) spoiled the whole plot, and the whole film.
I'll state there's a rather strange ending that prompts the credits. And I'll wonder if the producers were of the mind that they didn't wish to spoil folks Holidays by showing Santa in a jail cell though ironically deemed it okay to have him split a number of skulls and a throat in the feature.
Overall not a bad flick, nothing to write home to the folks, in regards to a feature that proves without a shadow of a doubt why Xmas is the best time of the year for giving, being charitable and falling prey to emotional and psychological breakdowns.
DISCLAIMER; not all Asian toys are shoddily constructed mostly those featured in this movie for the sake of the feature itself. Feel free to visit your local dollar store and send bucket loads of $ China's way but don't be surprised when your kid turns the toy over sees 'Made in Taiwan' and shots you a miffed look.
While thinking the whole time...Really...a subscription to Penthouse would've been better!
Directed by Glen Morgen
Runtime 84 minutes
USA / Canada
Boasting an array of grisly kills, a well executed score and a plethora of 'misguided/misdirecting' jumpy moments and chills I will go out on a limb (unlike most other critics) and state that I quite liked this movie. The acting was decent, the stalk-n-slash atmosphere was effective and the killer's back story was well explained.
Perhaps the storyline was a tad naff at times but the movie is still one I enjoyed immensely. Truth be told very few of my favorite movies are Oscar worthy though they all promise views over flowing with entertaining humor, plenty of crimson and usually plenty of what-the-fuck, did-that-just-happen moments.
In all honesty I believe this doesn't warrant the gutter score that Rotten Tomatoes has for it, I've seen much worse. Give it a shot, you might be mildly surprised. Poor Billy. You might at to keep an 'eye' out for these candles Sir.
Directed by Grant Harvey, Steve Hoben and Brett Sullivan
Runtime 99 minutes
Within five Interwoven tales (cleverly edited so that one plays partly then another and another until all are through) we learn that dastardly spirits are on the prowl in search of a particular something, Santa's Elves may in fact die (again and again), the spirit of Christmas isn't always represented by an angelic happy visage and mythical creatures tread on more than just the pages of a European fairytale omnibus.
Dangerous Dan is a radio host (portrayed by William Shatner) spinning the night away he's accompanied by a carton of eggnog, brandy and a surly weather guy, Stormin' Norman, who lacks even the smallest modicum of Holiday cheer.
The small township still mourns over the loss of two youths lost to what many perceive as a senseless killing. A small band of others are nothing but intrigued by the crimes and hope to finish work on a documentary production that may well spell immediate success and recognition for all involved. A sinister spirit has other ideas in mind and begins to slowly consume and control the emotions and deeds of the three, utilizing a driving force that distracts and powers most near every teenager's thoughts, no matter their discipline, future goals and aspirations.
Meanwhile Santa (George Buza) is preparing for another yearly 'run'.
All appears normal and joyous until Shiney (the Elf) coughs up blood and a lengthy, vicious, tirade of words foreign to all by the most vile and utterly devoid of seasonal cheer (who would have ever thought Elves were potty mouthed little bastards!). A foulness, an infection (?) quickly rears it's ugly head at the Pole, it's not a drunken reindeer, as both Mr and Mrs. Santa ponder upon the mortality of the Elves, their entry level positons as part of the Walking Dead cast and tactics useful to keep the Elf collective from tearing out the heart of the Clause dynasty, the Clauses themselves and Christmas itself.
There are those of course that need to go that extra mile to make this a year to remember be it purchasing the biggest, most obnoxious, light up decorations in the neighborhood (yea, you know who you are!) or trekking past the boundaries of public lands to pick out the perfect tree no matter the legwork.
Scott drags his family to do just this, returning to the family household minus a tree but bearing a ravenous child, suddenly apathetic and intent on nothing but spurning a rift between parents already at odds with one another.
He really isn't acting like himself.
So who is he then?
Aunt Edda is a recluse living in the countryside. Her relative peace and quiet is shattered as a handful of her estranged family decide it's high time to do their darnest to insert themselves in her will.
As if it wasn't awkward enough the youngest of the family breaks a relic of a legendary horned Christmas beastie. Shooed away the family are left to their own devices in the wintery forest as they encounter a patch of disagreeable highway a conflict their four wheeled companion loses horribly.
They soon learn they aren't alone in the forest.
Who, or what is stalking them? A presence who cares not for the sanctity of the church or the family unit. A string of deceitful falsehoods are unveiled, are they enough, is there time and are the assumptions of the ramifications (within a religious institution) of such correct?
One things for sure that white horned muscly fellow sure has a hell of a tongue on him, a heat seeking one at that!
But what drives him, why has he paid the small township a visit?
Furthermore what does he want with Santa?
There's so much going on in this feature and such a limited space in which to write, though I shall try to keep it short please forgive me if I waffle, as I'm often prone to when I get excited.
A Christmas Horror Story does a great job of embellishing all five storylines to a point where the viewer yearns to know what's going to happen next. The film weaves each segment, successfully interspersing them between each other, as if the feature is a collection of serials and in just the right moment to keep the audience's attention keen.
Other great touches didn't go unnoticed either, for example the added chilling Christmas themed music in certain scenes/incidences.
Personally I enjoyed the Santa segment immensely especially since I'm a life member of 'Humbug Monthly'. It was stunning to see the old bearded fellow beating the snot out of his toy making, vertically challenged, friends. He really is a gent one doesn't want to trifle with (Umm...did that reindeer just cut you off? Forget it. Seriously trust me on this!) though being of the North Pole and having very little understanding of zombie culture it sure took him a while to realize “...the head shots the only true stoppa!” (yea, it's the Holiday season what better way to celebrate than with a Bad Taste quote).
Dangerous Dan's radio personality segment is a nice touch and turns into much more as the movie nears it's climax, though overall left a few questions I wouldn't mind answering. For instance who's Suzzane? A token off-air helper, or more. It's probably not important though what is is the cleverly conceived finale.
And just when you thought the storyline had gotten a tad silly.
A brilliant end to a fun ride. Five tales brimming with suspense, dark humor, just the right amount of crimson and a character I presumed to be portrayed by Taye Diggs (though Adrian Holmes still pulls off a fantastic job of a troubled parent).
Recommended for a viewing to impart humor and cleanse the senses of the overloading vivid qualities associated with the hell that is this season (bah Humbug!).
Keep an ear out for the priceless line of the film...It's like Paul Bunyan and Count Dracula gayed up and made a house together. And an important message from Dan...keep your loved ones close, treat them like it may be your last Christmas. Santa kicking some Elf ass what more could you ask for seriously?
I've got a few more vintage, and others not quite so, festive treats to sift though. – Cult