Ever since the success of Trick 'r Treat, Horror filmmakers have been trying their damnedest to come up with their own equally compelling Horror Anthologies, most of which haven't even come close to measuring up to the lofty bar set by Mike Dougherty's modern day classic. Quality Anthologies just aren't that easy to pull off, and neither are Christmas-themed Horror movies. For every Black Christmas, we get a Santa Claws or Santa's Slay to put up with.
A Christmas Horror Story is stuck somewhere in between those extremes.
It's interesting to us that the creator of the superb Horror Anthology, Trick 'r Treat, will be releasing his own full-length Krampus movies in theaters this December. Somehow, we think he'll end up getting it just right.
A Christmas Horror Story is broken down into three main storylines which are told concurrently, and accented by a wraparound involving a pending battle between Santa Claus and Krampus. They're also all kind of related to each other, but not to the extent that it alters the plot.
Story 1- Three teens sneak into their school on Christmas Eve to do some investigative reporting on the grisly murders that happened there a year prior. Now, why they would do that is beyond me, because they cant show anyone the footage, as they're not supposed to be there to begin with, but I digress. They sneak into the locked basement where the murders happen, and begin to search around for clues or whatever, and end up getting locked in.... but not alone! This chapter started off strong enough, but by the end, it kind of felt like a typical episode of Goosebumps or something similar.
|HE'S NOT EVEN BEING SUBTLE ABOUT BREAKING THE 4TH WALL, IS HE?|
|SHE REALLY HATES HER FAMILY.|
|JUST LEAVE HIS ASS IN THE WOODS.|
We also really liked the twist at the end, which we thought was pretty damn clever.
|LIVE LONG AND PROSPER, WILLIAM SHATNER.|
Had the movie played out in true Anthology form -as in showing each story unfold, one at a time, while being accented by the wraparound- we think it would have resonated better with us. Going back and forth and back and forth between three separate stories and a wrap-around not only felt clumsy, but it lessened the impact of those stories.
We're also not sure why they didn't release this one closer to Christmas rather than Halloween, as it has a great wintry, yuletide vibe going for it throughout.
|SANTA AIN'T HAVING IT.|
It's not bad, but it's not great either.
A Christmas Horror Story is available now on VOD.
A Christmas Horror Story.