Christmas Evil

Christmas Evil ★★★★

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

I've seen Christmas Evil several times over the years -- the first time was on VHS under the title "Terror in Toyland" -- but I have always struggled to stop focusing on what I want it to be (a Santa slasher) and focus on what it is (a psychological horror film about a man who believes he is Santa). There's still a part of me that wishes it was more like Silent Night, Deadly Night, but at least now I can understand why John Waters thinks it's the best Christmas movie ever made (even though I vastly disagree and think that if any film deserves that title, it's the original Black Christmas). Anyway, there's a lot to love about Christmas Evil, not least of which is the fascinating central performance by Fiona Apple's dad, Brandon Maggart. He totally makes you believe that HE believes he's Santa Claus. The climax where he is chased by an angry, torch-bearing mob of parents right out of Frankenstein, and protected by their innocent children, is just brilliant. This film is a great commentary on the lies that we tell our children, and how it can warp their perception of reality when they become adults.

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