Anthology films. You love them as much as I do, right? For five years in a row I have culminated my annual 31 Nights of Horror with Trick ‘r Treat because I think anthology movies are the bees knees. You get multiple stories in one! It’s the gift that keeps on giving.
That’s why I’m elated to review a modern holiday horror anthology, A Christmas Horror Story.
First, a pro tip: when you see a horror movie on Netflix that has higher than a two-star rating you need to pay attention. That means that many REAL people who aren’t amazing horror weirdos like us gave it a good review. This one currently has three stars. Well done.
A Christmas Horror Story features four blustery tales of wintry dismay that will give the whole family a reason to believe in holiday magic. With everything that happens, it seems you’re likely to have a shitty Christmas if you’re a resident of a town called Bailey Downs. Ghosts, changelings, zombies, and Krampus are indeed the reasons for the season.
The film is well made and entertaining, and the twist to one of the main four stories is pretty good. Some of the scenes are cheesy and laughable, but they are a wonderful homage to ridiculous horror premises and the Christmas horror trope in general. As Peter Sobczynski wrote for Rogerebert.com, “Once you’ve seen one homicidal elf, you’ve seen them all”. That’s why we love this genre, though, because anything and everything goes. But the biggest scene stealer of all is William Shatner looking like an adorable grandpa in a Christmas sweater as a radio DJ who gets increasingly hammered and presides over the stories.
This is a great movie to watch over Christmas weekend or, if you’re lucky enough to have one, during your Christmas vacation. It’s an easy watch and a great holiday tradition to start. I give it two Krampus thumbs up.