Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Holiday Horror: Santa's Slay (2005)

Whoa. What in the HELL did I just watch? Santa's Slay is a Canadian horror comedy that is full of "yuletide fear" as Santa Claus wreaks havoc in a place called Hell Township. Oh, dear goodness, what have we gotten ourselves into with this movie?

So Santa is not the lovable character we all know and love. Apparently, Santa was the result of another virgin birth in history - that of a young woman and Satan. Yes, SATAN = SANTA, get it? But 1,000 years this day on Christmas Eve, Santa lost a bet with an angel (decided by a curling match) and so he had to be nice guy for 1,000 years and give people presents and shit. Now he's back to kill everyone that's been naughty OR nice.

If you're still with the movie past the first scene, then you've made it pretty far. Actually this scene is kind of great only because of the actors that make an appearance. Here we have Chris Kattan from Saturday Night Live, Fran Drescher, Rebecca Gayheart, and... wait for this... JAMES CAAN. Santa (played by a celebrity as well - former pro wrestler Bill Goldberg) busts through the chimney and massacres the crap out of this family. All this introduces the insanely cheesy comedy and little bit too well choreographed fight scenes found in the rest of the movie.

I'm not sure if I can truly recommend this film at this point or not. I certainly had a good time watching it, in that "Oh my gosh, this is so ridiculous but at the same time kind of awesome" way, but the comedy element was almost too much. There is that fine line as we all know between comedy and horror and this movie was all comedy with only the slightest touch of the horror element.

The story centers around teenager Nicholas Yuleson (how many puns can we get into one name?) and his crazy grandfather who knows the truth about Santa Claus but no one believes him. Also along for the ride is young Mary "Mack" Mackenzie, Nicholas's friend and love interest. Nicholas gets stuck in middle of Santa's reign of terror and uses his knowledge from his grandfather to try to bring him down.

Of course, this movie has to have Santa killing people with all kinds of Christmas related objects. A man is strangled with wreath; a kid trying to rob Santa is stabbed in the eye with a candy cane; a woman is killed by a Christmas tree topper thrown like a ninja throwing star; a woman is drowned in egg nog; and Santa throws exploding presents out of his sleigh. A Jewish store owner is also stabbed in the neck with a menorah. One of the funniest moments I thought, though, was when Santa goes to a strip club to kill a whole mess of people, and actually sprays and wipes down the stripper pole before ripping it out and using it to kill a guy.

There are a lot of kills in a lot of inventive ways but no gore and almost no blood. Kind of a disappointment. But like I said, Santa's Slay is not so much about the horror but the comedy.

And also, just as you'd expect, Santa - and in fact the whole cast - spouts off more Christmas related one-liners than I thought was humanly possibly. Pretty much every well-known Christmas phrase or lines from Christmas movies are used as puns or as a Freddy Krueger like one-liner said before someone is killed. Some of the jokes were kind of funny... others just something to scoff at and go, "REALLY? You're using THAT as a joke?"

So, I guess Santa's Slay is a fun movie that enjoys its own ridiculousness. Not the best movie ever, but I doubt you'd be able to say that about any movie that has Santa as a crazed, non-discriminatory killer. Well, maybe Silent Night, Deadly Night... but at least Santa wasn't played by a WWF guy in that movie.


  1. Awesome! I'm quite fond of watching seasonally inappropriate movies so I love this post.

  2. Totally enjoyed this flick, especially for the uber-hilarious opening!

  3. This movie looks awesome. Man I love 80's cheese!

  4. I freakin' adore this movie. It's all comedy and no horror, but I just turn my brain off (which ain't difficult for me) and laugh at it. Plus, as someone who was once a pre-teen wrestling fan and then was a teenage wrestling fan, it's the closest I ever get to seeing Goldberg vs. Zeus.

  5. This needs to be on my DVD shelf, now. I am so hunting down this. Looks absolutely classically bad.

  6. I think your opening line says it all, well said. This is definitely a great one and dare i say cult classic? -Thanks for the review.