Ever heard of a little movie called Gremlins? You know, the one where you absolutely, positively do not feed those critters after midnight? (But what happens anyway?..)
There is some sort of thrill with watching movies that like to interweave the macabre with extremely cheerful events...like Christmas. Gremlins is a baby's tale compared to some I'm about to list.
If you like Santa, but you don't like murder, maybe skip this Macabre Monday's list of Christmas Chillers.
This list is in no apparent order. Except for #1. That's the one you must watch. Trust me.
All synopses are from IMDb.
11. Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale (2010)
In the depths of the Korvatunturi mountains, 486 metres deep, lies the closest ever guarded secret of Christmas. The time has come to dig it up! This Christmas everyone will believe in Santa Claus.You'll need the subtitles for this one, but it's totally worth it. Fantastical, sci-fi-ish, and of course, spooky.
10. Santa's Slay (2005)
Santa Claus is actually a demon who lost a bet with an Angel, so he becomes the giver of toys and happiness. But when the bet is off, he returns to his evil ways.The main reason I recommend this one--and watched it myself--is because "Santa" is played by Bill Goldberg, you know, the former wrestler Goldberg.
9. Dead End (2003)
Christmas Eve. On his way to his in-laws with his family, Frank Harrington decides to try a shortcut, for the first time in 20 years. It turns out to be the biggest mistake of his life.This one's quite a...weird one. But in a good way, I think. I like movies that catch you off guard. Just watch out for empty baby carriages.
8. Silent Night (2012)
The police force of a remote Midwestern town search for a killer Santa Claus who is picking off citizens on Christmas Eve.You probably weren't expecting actors such as Jaime King or Malcolm McDowell in this crude film, but it's got 'em. And it's pretty good.
7. Nutcracker (2001)
It's another crazy Christmas and psychotherapist Dr. Carlton Fairfax, Jr. is losing control of his patients and his sanity - then he meets one particularly mysterious patient who sees to it that he definitely continues down that road.If you know any of David Lynch's work, then you know how surreal each of his movies feels. It's the same with this one. Which is why it's creepy, I think.
6. Treevenge (2008)
Christmas trees ripped out of their forest plan revenge against people enjoying the holidays.This short is full of trees and...blood. That's all I can say for now. I cannot express how vital it is that you go watch this haha. But seriously. Now.
5. The Children (2008)
A relaxing Christmas vacation turns into a terrifying fight for survival as the children begin to turn on their parents.One of my favorites, actually. And I don't just mean Christmas-horror-movie-wise. I think I stayed away from children for like a month after this one came out.
4. Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984)
After his parents are murdered, a young tormented teenager goes on a murderous rampage dressed as Santa, due to his stay at an orphanage where he was abused by the Mother Superior.This one is prettttty dang callous. It'll stay with you for a while.
3. Jack Frost (1997)
A serial killer dies, comes back as a snowman, and wreacks havoc.I would say go for this one moreso if you're wanting a laugh. You're going to be watching a giant, reincarnated snowman kill people for Pete's sake. I remember watching it on the Syfy channel years ago when that Campbell's commercial came on where the "snowman" comes inside from the cold, eats the Campbell's soup, and melts into the little boy. It just made the movie even funnier.
2. The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)
Jack Skellington, king of Halloweentown, discovers Christmas Town, but doesn't quite understand the concept.OK, so it's really the kind of movie you can decide whether to watch on Halloween or Christmas. But aren't all of these?! Seriously, one of the best movies ever. And a child can still watch it and love it.
1. Black Christmas (1974).
A sorority house is terrorized by a stranger who makes frightening phone calls and then murders the sorority sisters during Christmas break.There is a 2006 remake, but my friends and I laughed at some of the parts that were truly trying to be hardcore scary. In the original '70s version, it's a little bit frightening, and a perfect slasher film. You may not be into the older films, but I usually find them a bit scarier than what is pumped out today. It may be the atmosphere, it may be the tendencies to create a fair amount of gore after building tension, but whatever it is--it works. This is my all-time favorite horror movie to watch around Christmas.
If you're not into Hallmark movies, I trust you'll at least find the time to sit it out for Treevenge.
Scary Christmas to All! (And to All a Good Fright)