A Christmas Horror Story – Good, Bad & Ugly Review

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 76% (Critics) / 95% (Audience)
Directed By: Grant Harvey, Steve Hoban, and Brett Sullivan
Written By: Jason Filiatrault, James Kee, Sarah Larsen, Doug Taylor, and Pascal Trottier
Starring: Zoé De Grand Maison, George Buza, Amy Forsyth, Adrian Holmes and William Shatner
Studio: Copperheart Entertainment
Synopsis: Interwoven stories that take place on Christmas Eve, as told by one festive radio host: A family brings home more than a Christmas tree, a student documentary becomes a living nightmare, a Christmas spirit terrorizes, Santa slays evil. – (Source)


The Good:
Santa Claus vs Foul-Mouthed Zombie Elves.
If that doesn’t pique your interest then you are completely dead inside. The portion of the film that focuses on Santa in his North Pole toymaking HQ under siege from his own workforce turned into rage zombies is as all heck and made even better by a really smart twist that manages to tie back to another part of the movie. Plus we get a Santa vs Krampus throwdown for good measure.
Throwing in William Shatner as a boozy, non-PC radio disc jockey working a double shift on Christmas Eve is just a cherry on top.

The Bad:
Sadly Santa’s tale is the highlight of an anthology that falters greatly with the other stories. The ghost story is just so derivative and feels like any ghostly horror movie made in the last 5-10 years while the tale of a changeling who comes home with an unhappily married couple disguised as their son had tons of potential but never really managed to reach it. And the Krampus tale was just haphazardly thrown together and had no truly memorable moments in it at all.

The Ugly:
Whoever came up with the idea of interspersing these stories throughout the entire movie instead of starting and finishing each one before moving on to the next really made a boneheaded move. Just as any momentum was picking up with one story it would abruptly transition to a different story and all that accomplished was making the entire movie feel stilted and uneven.

Final Verdict: A too busy holiday horror anthology that features two tales that are blah and predictable, one tale that is full of potential that is never tapped and one tale that really should have been the focus of the entire film. That one Kris Kringle themed horror story and the fact that the whole affair is book-ended by the always great William Shatner helps A CHRISTMAS HORROR STORY become a movie worth a look instead of one to avoid at all costs.

Grade: C+

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