Christmas Bloody Christmas (2022)

Christmas Bloody Christmas
Director: Joe Begos
Writer: Joe Begos
Cast: Riley Dandy, Sam Delich, Jonah Ray, Dora Madison, Jeff Daniel Phillips, Abraham Benrubi, Jeremy Gardner
Part of: SLASH Filmfestival Christmas Party
Seen on: 15.12.2022

Tori (Riley Dandy) runs a record store with her employee Robbie (Sam Delich). After the last Christmas shoppers leave, the two of them decide to spend Christmas together by getting really, really drunk. But their drunken revelry gets interrupted in a bloody way when a Santa Claus robot (Abraham Benrubi) comes to evil life and starts to kill anyone it encounters.

I have to say that I found Christmas Bloody Christmas mostly pretty exhausting. The idea promised so much fun, but amid the drinking and the overzealous shouting, it lost sight of being entertaining and just became tedious.

The film poster showing Santa (Abraham Benrubi) covered in blood, his eyes glowing green and holding a bloody axe.

Tori and Robbie don’t talk to each other. They talk all the time, pretty loudly, but mostly to trump each other with bits of music trivia and a “I have better taste than you” contest that equals “good” with “obscure”, or at least the opposite of popular. Goodness forbid that one might like something mainstream. Tori in particular suffers from this as a character. I generally got the feeling that she is Begos’ idea of the perfect woman more than an actual person.

So, the first half hour or so is Tori and Robbie shouting trivia at each other and drinking. Because they include some frank talk about sex as well, we’re supposed to see this as sexy and romantic. I just found it annoying, although a shout-out has to go out to Dandy and Delich for not only keeping up the volume all the time, but somehow finding a kernel of likeability in their characters. One does care what happens to them.

Tori (Riley Dandy) covered in blood and holding a shotgun.

Once the killing starts, the film doesn’t get any less frantic, and no quieter. The score is racked up even more, the screaming becomes less coherent. Everything stays loud and just a tad too much. And at the same time, it’s not enough. Much like its protagonist, the movie marches robotically through its plot and kill scenes. There is only one death that comes as a bit of a surprise, at least at that moment. The rest just feels kind of mechanical and not particularly inspired when it comes to the gore.

Maybe you need to be high and/or drunk to enjoy the film. Sober as I was, I was really glad that it is just shy of 90 minutes and didn’t force itself on me or my ears for longer.

Santa (Abraham Benrubi) preparing to attack with an axe.

Summarizing: so loud and not much else.

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