Kringle Will Kill!: RevTerry's List of Killer Santa Flicks

For me, men dressed as Santa fall into the same category as fucking clowns. I don't really have any fears tied to the imagery so much, but there’s something about the whole situation that doesn't sit well. Life has taught me a few things in my travels, and one of the lessons I have learned is that those who go out of their way to dress up as trustworthy, lovable characters are usually anything but. I don't want to say every clown and Santa is out to do some fucked up shit, I just can't help but feel it’s a case of trying too hard, which leaves me wondering what the motives are. That's just me, for most- Santa Claus is a monument of good feels and free shit. Somehow, the idea that we are all being watched and graded by a magic pink dude in a red sweater comforts people. Who am I to judge? Although I like my fictional characters a little less authoritative, I guess I can see the appeal. As is its nature, the general horror genre loves to prey upon the sacred safety blankets of the masses, with varying degrees of precision and success. So to my fortune, there are more than a few “Killer Santas” in film and TV to more align with my seasonal paranoia. I have listed the ones I know of (or can think of) below in no special order. It seems there is no shortage of malicious takes on the head elf, but I would be willing to make a bet that no scary Saint Nick could possibly top the fleshy mass of scar tissue and alcohol in a red cap that I just stood behind in line at the corner store. That spirit of Christmas was fucking rough. Shit... If he is reading this I'm sure you're a very nice dude, please don't come through my chimney and skull fuck me.
“…And All Through The House” segment from Tales From The Crypt (1972) Directed by Freddie Francis
The first of the five stories that make up the 1972 original Tales From The Crypt film. The granddaddy of killer Santas was adapted somewhat faithfully from a story first published in the horror comic series Vault Of Horror. Joan Collins is amazing as the ruthless victim and the Santa has some real-life creepy old man vibes going down, making it a dark holiday favorite (along with its remake). I wasn't alive at the time, but it seems to be pretty early on in the killer Santa game (Silent Night, Bloody Night took on the holiday that same year but did not feature a bloody thirsty Father Christmas).  Plus if you watch the first segment you might as well finish the whole movie it's pretty awesome.
“And All Through The House” episode from Tales From The Crypt (1989) Directed by Robert Zemeckis
The same comic used in the 1972 movie was later adapted for the TV show of the same name. While it stayed close to both the comic and the first adaptation it took on the campy, dark but fun-loving tone of the series, making the film version feel heavy-handed in comparison. The Santa is a whole different kind of nutbag despite doing pretty much the same stuff and is a good ringer for the psycho pictured on the final few panels of the original comic.
Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984) Directed by Charles E. Sellier Jr.
For a lot of people this is the first flick they thought of when they heard “killer Santa” and with good reason, as it was the object of moral debate during its sordid release. This was due to the film's portrayal of antagonist in a Santa suit, despite already being done in 1972 (see above) and in 1980s Christmas Evil (see below). The film follows the unstable Billy as the world shits on him in various ways with extra doses during the holiday season. After showing highlights from his cruddy life, it culminates with him getting fully costumed and taking people out with an ax. Bonus appearance by genre favorite Linnea Quigley. GIFs and more from the film (on the Tumblr)
Christmas Evil AKA You Better Watch Out (1980) Directed by Lewis Jackson
Despite not being as well known, Christmas Evil is one of the earliest and most unique entries on the killer Santa list even though it includes a lot of the same story elements as its more known kin. For the best I can do in way of description, it is an offbeat 80s psychological thriller with the Christmas and slasher elements placed on top. We follow the Christmas-obsessed Harry on his unsettling descent to madness, jumping from awkward comedic moments to gruesome takedowns. It’s uneven and a little loose on the editing but features some fun kills from its strangely lovable main character and an entertainingly uneasy tone.
Santa’s Slay (2005) Directed by 
Featuring a second string ensemble cast including professional wrestler “Goldberg” as the rampaging Santa, the goofy dark comedy is mostly just Santa puns and loony toon kills. It's a quick seasonal watch that never really gets boring even with its confusing family-centered tone. See my full review here
Santa Claws (1996) Directed by 
Not to be confused with the 2014 Air Bud rip off of the same name from Asylum, Santa Claws is a 90s low budget horror film from John A. Russo, yup Night of the Living Dead Russo. While it’s not the most polished holiday horror flick it's pretty fun trash and features Debbie Rochon which is always good.
Silent Night, Deadly Night Part 2 (1987) Directed by 
SNDN 2 picks up with Billy’s little brother who is locked in an insane asylum, damaged from the same terrible life events, as well as Billy’s rampage... Well kind of. A lot of the movie is large chunks of the edited version of the first movie played in their entirety. Going for the clip show on the second film is a bold, ill-fated move but the film does give us one of the greatest scenes in cinematic history.
Satan Claus (1996) Directed by 
The late 90s must be where I get my distrust of the fat man. Satan Claus is a gritty, sub-grade and basic slasher with mostly off-screen kills. Still, it's pretty spirited and when you can see what's going on, the whole film is dark (like lighting wise) as fuck, it's not a bad watch.
To All A Goodnight (1980) Directed by 
Bad news. The movie that features both a killer in a Santa costume and sorority girls at the same time is one of my least favorite of the list. I still don't really understand how that could be possible but I think the trouble lies with the bad pacing, stiff acting and bullshit twist. Worth a watch but all the best parts are better done in Black Christmas without the red suit.
Yule Die (2010) Directed by 
Low budget as fuck and heavily influenced by its predecessors. The homemade effort features a lot of love for the genre, some good blood and starts to get some real footing towards the end. If you're having a killer Santa marathon it's only fair that you bring this flawed Handycam film along (if you can find it). Everyone who leaves isn't your real friend anyway.
Silent Night (2012) Directed by 
It's got some fucking great gore at times but this flick could frankly be a remake of most the movies on this list, just as easily, story-wise. Pretty much just crazy Papai Noel, who goes on a spree and the cop who tries to stop him. It has little to do with the film it's supposed to be re-imagining but it's a pretty good Santa-kills-people flick nonetheless plus there is a flamethrower.
Silent Night, Deadly Night 5: The Toy Maker (1991) Directed by 
The sequel in name only takes a goofy foray into the killer toy genre and features a “killer Santa” by proxy only, but I think it counts. It also has a later performance from Mickey Rooney oddly enough as the crazy person dressed as Santa. Notable because of his stark disapproval of the original films antagonistic Saint Nick.
Xmas Story” episode of Futurama (1999) Directed by ,
I fucking love Futurama but I fucking hate this episode. It has a killer Santa so it makes the list. It kind of falls on the bad Christmas special side of the fence and the deadly Santa-Bot makes a few comebacks throughout the series but just never gets good for me. Being the worst Futurama episode is hardly a bad thing really, the show had some classic moments in my opinion. This was just not one of them.
Sint AKA Saint (2010) Directed by 
Saint Nick is actually out to fuck shit up instead of giving out gifts in The Netherlands, pissed off about being burned at the stake in the 1400s. The film puts a little more focus on the fantasy elements but mostly is just crusty Santa Claus fucking people up. Good splattertastic shit. I guess in its own country it caused some controversy as well, Silent Night Deadly Night style.
Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale (2010) Directed by 
It could be argued that Rare Exports is more a Krampus flick and I purposely avoided others for this list, for classification reasons. The difference here is the creature is mostly referred to as Santa Claus and there is no mention of him being a separate creature from Father Christmas. Out of every movie I listed here, this is the only one I can truly call a family Christmas movie. Its got a few scares but has an almost 80s Spielberg feel about it.
Psycho Santa (2003) Directed by 
Pure shit, very low grade, and cliche slasher, you might need to bring some intoxicated homies for this one. Gifs and more thoughts on the film (Tumblr)
All Through the House (2015) Directed by 
I only watched this independent entry for the first time this year and was pleasantly surprised. Mostly an homage to the slashers of old, it doesn't feature a lot in the way of innovation but what it does bring to the table is more fun than a bag of dicks. I mean, it is a bag of dicks. Like a bag of severed male sex organs. 10/10 would recommend a watch with mom.

To me, these movies only magnify the fact that for some reason you want some judgmental dude sliding up in your house when you're asleep. That seems like a conflicting rule to have about home invasion, but whatever. Plus Kris Kringle only gets better with an ax and some bloodlust.
I'm sure I missed a few, you can let me know here, on Tumblr or below. If I haven't seen it, I'm sure I want to. Have a great holiday, remember not to trust a motherfucker just because he wears a red stocking cap, and if you see me out there wearing that shit, you can bet I lost my fucking mind. So shoot to kill, but you know, in the way that allows for a sequel.

Love RevTerry
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