FearTASTIC Vault O’FUN #40
A Christmas Horror Story (2015)
Director(s): Grant Harvey, Steven Hoban, Brett Sullivan
Writer(s): Jason Filiatrault, James Kee, Sarah Larsen, Dough Taylor, Pascal Trottier
Starring: William Shatner, George Buza, Rob Archer, Zoé De Grand Maison, Oluniké Adeliyi
Oh to be human! There I was sick as a dog on a fine December weekend. It was one of those terrific California winter days where it’s not cold by any means but crisp enough to enjoy a brisk walk enjoying your surroundings or sitting at a hip outdoor bar/restaurant where you can people watch all day and not move more than 5 inches throughout the day.
Sadly (and perhaps expected), your FearTASTIC host is one of the most stubborn patients on this planet. I refuse to give up or give in to fevers/colds/coughs as I stroll to work, hit the gym, enjoy my many horror delights. I try to avoid people as much as possible (similar traits shared by most of my sicko readers, I’m sure) to make sure no one gets contaminated but I go about my day as if everything was machete smooth. This particular week however, a combination of getting older, long work nights and a busy social life finally drove me to the edge. I was halfway passed out by 7pm on a Friday night and spend the night wheezing and coughing in bed. The next morning wasn’t any better as both nostrils decided to call it quits and random aches and shivers crept all over my body. I needed a cure and luckily for me, HORROR flicks are the best medicine…or at least a fun distraction as I main-lined cough drops.
Netflix has always had an impressive lineup of horror flicks. I understand that a rotation occurs but at any given time, they have a collection of old school favorites, mainstream flops and my personal favorite, budding independent flicks just begging to be watched. The desperation is infectious as the independent horror scene try to capture your attention with the craziest and disturbing posters they can come up with to tantalize that sick part in your head that loves the entertaining power of HORROR. Yes, it’s December and although I can rattle on about some classic Christmas horror flicks I enjoyed as a kid, I always found it kitsch to watch Christmas horror flicks around the Holidays. I have no problem with regular Christmas flicks but perhaps horror is such a big part in my life, I refused to constrain myself to one type of horror flick on any given holiday.
Then again, I was sick and rational thoughts were no longer in my head.
So as I scrolled through the many horror choices, my mind was racing with various phrases like; “Seen it, it’s alright, maybe pile, yikes and no thanks, good but not in the mood.” I was beginning to think maybe horror was not in the cards today. I am a connoisseur of all genres of movies with horror being my specialty so I decided to start scrolling upwards to the different genres and that’s when it hit me; there in the recently added section was a gleaming poster that showed an impressive Krampus battling what looked like to be Santa Claus! The title confirmed all my hopes; and with that I began to watch A Christmas Horror Story.
Now first off, this horror flick in my favorite form (all together now kids) …ANTHOLOGY! Even with a fever I felt myself getting giddy while coughing barks of joy. The film starts with a bang as we see our hero Santa Claus in what seems to be a post – fight scene which already is more effort than most anthology horror flicks. This particular story decided to start in the middle, oh boy! The film proceeds to unfold different stories which includes a bratty family that learns the legend of the monster, Krampus, a group of teenagers that investigate a previous murder at a school, a mother who suspects her child may be more than meets the eye and of course, our first tale of Santa Claus battling zombie elves (stay with me, I promise you it’s quite entertaining)! All this and we get William Shatner himself as the glue if you will to all these tales as it usually cuts to him in between tales.
I particularly liked how although all four horror flicks share the same theme of Christmas, each story slightly represented a different kind of horror genre. Let’s start first with the bratty family; this entry oozes of your typical tale of most slasher/monster movies from the 80s that teach you not to be a complete A-HOLE or else the boogeyman will get you! Then you have the investigative teenagers searching through the old high school for a story; this is classic ghost tale where you shouldn’t mettle where you shouldn’t be kiddos! Next we have the mother who loses her child in the forest and when the child is found, the mother suspects he may not be the same child, CLASSIC child possession or switch that has the kid being creepy as can be since the loving child is now gone. Finally we have Santa battling the elves, must I say more? I think we’ve covered our share of silly yet entertaining horror flicks in this vault so for all you first time readers, they exist…trust me. The silliness however is counteracted by how much fun it is to watch the ridiculousness of elves getting smashed, sliced and bashed in many different ways. Just when you thought that was the end of the horror genres in this flick, the Santa story hits you like any good infomercial (WAIT, THERE’S MOOOOORE)! There’s a clever twist to the story that I won’t spoil for you here but our friend Shatner waiting in the wings has a trick or two up his sleeve.
Although, this flick didn’t cure my fever that weekend, it did make me feel good enough to forget that I’m getting old and I better start taking illness seriously…especially if it means staying in bed all day watching horror flicks!
That’s it for 2016 my FEARtastic friend; we have made it to 40 entries in our humble VAULT! Not quite half but definitely more than we thought…or I thought…my vault was supposed to be private, what are all you weirdos doing here?!?!? SECURITY!
See you sickos in 2017.
Life is FAR more interesting when we take interest in things that scare us.