Deck the halls with boughs of holly… and reskins of classical action films. When I reviewed Violent Night (2022) earlier this month, I said that it was basically the Christmas version of Die Hard (1988). Well, while I was watching the newest inclusion to the Christmas Horror genre, Christmas Bloody Christmas (2022), the one film that kept popping up in my head was The Terminator (1984).

Christmas Bloody Christmas is set in a small town on Christmas Eve. Small business owner Tori and her only employee Robbie have planned on spending their holiday getting drunk and high. They didn’t count on a company repurposing military robots into Santa Clauses. When the robotic Kringle goes haywire and goes on a “slay”ride around town, Tori and Robbie’s party is quickly cut short.

Overall, I liked this film. It followed a simple plot, the monster had one clear objective, the gore was plentiful, and the filmmakers didn’t shy away from having the robot Santa indiscriminately killing anything and anyone in its path.

Near the start of the third act, the plot heavily leaned into the “borrowing” from The Terminator.

One of the critiques I have against the film is that when the robotics started to actually show up on film, it started to feel a bit hokey. At the beginning of the film, the robot Claus looks exactly like a human, but as it takes damage the robot itself becomes more prevalent. There’s one particular part of those robotics that I found really annoying.

The film was written and directed by Joe Begos. Begos did a pretty good job telling this particular yuletide murder fest. The cast was equally good. There’s really only two main leads in this film, Riley Dandy as Tori Tooms and Sam Delich as Robbie Reynolds. Riley is the highlight of the film though as the film’s Final Girl.

We can’t forget about Santa Claus, played by Abraham Benrubi. Benrubi doesn’t speak much or show any emotion, but he does know how to walk ominously toward someone with an axe in hand.

If you’re interested in a newer seasonal film with an interesting, if not rehashed, concept then this one might be right up your alley. However, if you’re looking for something a bit more Jimmy Stewart, then you might want to look somewhere else.

This film was released on Shudder on Dec. 9, and it’s a great addition to the streaming platform. Have you seen this one? What’d you think? Let me know in the comments!


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