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Back in the day, holiday movies used to feature messy family dinners and a nice Hallmark message at the end. Now it seems like Hollywood is waging war against that image and replacing it with blasphemy personified—murder, mayhem and raunchy sex.

Need proof? We’ve compiled the movies that have given Santa and his reindeer the middle finger:

Santa’s Slay (2005): Remember when former wrestler Bill Goldberg dressed up in a Santa Claus suit and terrorized the neighborhood? We only learned two things watching this movie—Goldberg probably shouldn’t be in movies and….Santa is “Satan’s only son?” What the what?! Is there nothing sacred???

Black Christmas (2006): No, this isn’t a friendly holiday movie about a black Santa Claus. We wish it was. Actually, Santa ran amok at a sorority house where he killed his family 15 years before. Basically, he trades a sleigh full of gifts for a car filled with blood and guts. How sweet.

And All Through the House (Tales from the Crypt, 1972): The Crypt Keeper never missed an opportunity to scare the kiddies, even if it was Christmas. In this episode, he shares the story of a trifling woman who kills her husband with a fireplace poker on Christmas Eve. Afterwards, her oblivious young daughter lets Santa Claus in the house (who’s actually a serial killer in disguise). We just can’t make this stuff up.

Don’t Open Till Christmas (1984): The real Scrooge is not a man in a house counting his coins and being visited by three ghosts. Apparently he’s a psychopath running the streets of London murdering dudes dressed as Santa. Clearly he’s not into the whole gift-giving thing, but there is never a reason to harm Santa! Jesus, St. Nicholas, someone please take the wheel.

Wind Chill (2007): You’d think going home to see your family for the holidays would be a happy time. But not in this movie. When a young woman (Emily Blunt) stupidly accepts a ride from a complete stranger to drive her home for Christmas break, she ends up having to fight off creepy ghosts and a crazy cop. What happened to singing Christmas carols as you speed down the highway?

Jack Frost (1997): Not even the snowman is safe. So now that snowman your kid spent all day outside building in the freezing cold is a killer on the loose, wreaking havoc in a small town? Another innocent childhood memory bastardized.

Silent Night, Deadly Light (1984): Good ole’ Saint Nick acted a damn fool in this movie, traumatizing everyone in his path. You know you’re watching a crazy movie when Santa skips the chimney and knocks down your front door with an axe, then proceeds to stab your mom and slices open dad’s stomach with reindeer horns. If it had to be all like that, Santa, we’ll just go without gifts this year.

Nightmare Before Christmas (1993): It was only a matter of time until director Tim Burton infiltrated the innocence of the holidays with this mysterious trip to Halloweentown, home of the steely Jack Skellington (voiced by Johnny Depp). Featuring haunting spells and dancing corpses, let’s just say kids have never looked at Christmas the same way again.

Thanksgiving (2007): In just under three minutes, this perverted fake trailer by Eli Roth, which preceded the “Grindhouse” movies, manages to terrify, disgust and freak us out all at that same time. It’s got everything from a trampoline-jumping cheerleader, who gets a knife to her hoo ha, to headless corpses (some which are served as part of Thanksgiving feast). And we hear a full movie may be coming soon. Parents, you’ve been warned. This is not for kids.

Gremlins (1984): When did a Gremlin become an acceptable Christmas gift to give someone? What ever happened to getting warm socks or a nice tie? In this classic, they forgo the logical gifts and opt for an inexplicably dangerous creature that you can’t even feed after midnight because it will multiply and become lethal! What?! This must be where we the idea of gift receipts came from.

Candice Frederick is an NABJ award-winning journalist and film blogger for Reel Talk. Follow her on twitter.


Top 10 Holiday Horror Movies  was originally published on