Film Review: “Krampus”

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Krampus, 2015

dir. Michael Dougherty
★★★★

Christmas movie season is upon us, and the first one is Krampus, the story of a family who gets stranded during a blizzard while haunted by the evil Christmas spirit of the shadow of St Nicholas, a horned, hooved monster called Krampus who is there to punish those of no hope.

I loved this movie, it was incredibly entertaining. There’s something special about a proper monster movie on Christmas that you just don’t get these days (it’s hard enough to come by regular monster movies, it’s all about haunted houses and found footage), and there’s plenty in this to satisfy horror fans, I think. The plot is a bit silly, which is already a given, but cast play off each other really well, and there are some great moments of light-hearted humour before the horror begins (and after it begins as well.) The opening sequence is beautiful, soft Christmas music playing over the wildness of last-minute shopping, people trampling over, punching, hurting each other for bargains, kids fighting during the recital, shopping mall Santa staring at a girl’s butt. It’s absolutely wonderful, and it sets a tongue-in-cheek tone that carries over the entire film, superimposed over some moments of genuine fright and some heart-clenching scenes.

The best part, however, were the monsters. They were mostly practical effects, I think, and it looks amazing. It looks like those 80s horror movies that are just a little bit grotesque and 100% awesome, and every single monster has charm, even the CG gingerbread men — yes. Krampus itself is really cool, especially when we finally get to see him in the flesh at the very end of the film.

So, if you miss the good ol’ days of monster Christmas movies, get yourself to your local cinema and check out Krampus! It’s really fun, and you won’t regret it!

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