I don’t know about you, but as soon as Thanksgiving is over, I like to break the horror hiatus I took after October 31st. I whip up a turkey-mayo sandwich and pop Black Christmas into the DVD player, eager to start the festivities to come. If want your scares to be more seasonal, here is a roundup of holiday horror for you to enjoy with that eggnog.
Gremlins (1984) - When a young man unintentionally breaks three cardinal rules concerning his new pet’s care, a horde of mischievous monsters are unleashed upon a small town at Christmastime. We all know this film, we all love it. For horror fans, this one is a classic.
Black Christmas (1974) - Another holiday staple for genre enthusiasts, Black Christmas follows the women of a sorority house as they are stalked by a stranger during their Christmas break. This film is best watched alone, at night, during the month of December.
Black Christmas (2006) - From the IMDB page: “An escaped maniac returns to his childhood home on Christmas Eve, which is now a sorority house, and begins to murder the sorority sisters one by one.” If you’re looking for a more fun version of the original, with gorier deaths and darker humor infused throughout, this Black Christmas remake is worth a watch.
Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984) - An unstable teenager deals with his parents’ murder by going on a murderous rampage dressed as Santa. This flick boasts a stellar original song: “Santa's watching, Santa's creeping, now you're nodding, now you're sleeping. Were you good for mom and dad? Santa knows if you've been bad!”
P2 (2007) - A thrilling movie that takes place largely in one enclosed area - a cold, unforgiving parking garage. A businesswoman is pursued by a psycho security guard after being locked in said parking structure, on Christmas Eve. Rachel Nichols makes a great Final Girl, who makes smart moves and is easy to empathize with.
Krampus (2015) - This recent entry into the holiday horror subgenre is a roaring good time that plays on an old legend. A disillusioned boy disregards Christmas for the year, and inadvertently summons a demon that preys on naughty children. With its morbid humor and practical effects, Krampus is destined to be the next holiday cult classic.
Sint (2011) - You know St. Nick, right? Imagine him as a malevolent, murderous bishop who slaughters children during the full moon on December 5th, and you’ve got Sint (or “Sinterklaas”). This film boasts over-the-top acting and grotesque visual effects, making it a silly but satisfying complement to its American counterpart, Silent Night, Deadly Night.
The Mothman Prophecies (2002) - This film isn’t set during the holiday, but its most iconic scene is centered around Christmas imagery. Mothman is a solid thriller that takes us into a reporter’s investigation into some strange events and sightings occurring in a small town. The fact that it’s “based on true events” heightens the fear factor.
Don’t Open Till Christmas (1984) - There’s a Christmas grinch in London! Someone is going around slaughtering anyone in a Santa suit, and it’s up to Scotland Yard to stop him. This movie is a gruesome (and I mean gruesome —— there’s a castration scene) bit of sludge that’s perfect for fans of low-budget shockers like Pieces.
Jack Frost (1997) - Not to be confused with the heartwarming holiday film starring Michael Keaton, this Jack Frost is a serial killer reincarnated as a snowman, hellbent on revenge for the law enforcement who caught him.
Do you have a favorite bloody Christmastime movie? Any glaring omissions from this list? Let us know in the comments below, and enjoy the holiday horrors!