Runtime: 98 minutes
Release Date: December 4, 2015
Director: Michael Dougherty
Max is a young boy getting ready to celebrate Christmas with his mom, dad, older sister, grandmother, aunt, uncle, and cousins. His parents are fairly well off, which means that his mom cares more about how they look to others than anyone else. His dad's mom is the only one who seems to put his interests first. That becomes abundantly clear when the rest of their family arrives in town. His cousins treat him like crap and make fun of him for still believing in Santa, especially after they find the letter he wrote the jolly guy. Max gets so upset that he rips the letter into pieces and runs off to cry.
When the group wakes the next day, they discover a literal blizzard outside. The power goes out, leaving them to spend much of the day huddled around the fire and wondering what happened. Only Omi, Max's grandmother, is calm, which may be because she's the only one who knows what actually happened. When his sister goes to check on her boyfriend, she comes face to face with an evil demon named Krampus who murders her on the street.
Though his father Tom and uncle Howard go out looking for his sister, all they find is strange stuff. They discover a plow truck stuck in the middle of the street and what looks like a gas explosion in a neighboring house. By the time they get back to the house to talk about what they see and to explain how Howard ended up with a major bite on his leg, Omi finally tells them that they're dealing with Krampus. As a young girl, she came face to face with the demon herself after giving up on the Christmas spirit. When Max gave up too, Krampus and his minions came to their neighborhood. As time goes by, it suddenly seems like there may not be hope for any of them.
After watching the straight to DVD Krampus film that came out last year, I figured the real version had to be a lot better. While it was better, it wasn't actually better by much. I'm not sure what it is about Krampus. It has some cute moments, some heart, some scary moments and jump scenes, and the type of family scenes that make you grateful for the family that you have. I think that it actually felt like it tried too hard. It almost seemed like the director and writers wanted to appeal to every type of horror movie fan, which resulted in them shoving so much into the story that it came across as forced.
Does that mean it was a terrible movie? Not at all. How can you not like a movie that features gingerbread men coming to live and trying to attack people, especially when they have a nail gun on their side? Those gingerbread men were much better than the one used in The Gingerdead Man movies. Those tiny little guys were easily the highlight of the film. With the exception of those little guys, Krampus just felt bland. The horror elements weren't horror-y enough, and the comedy moments weren't funny enough. As much as I would love to see a great horror movie for the holidays, Krampus wasn't it.
Instead of watching Krampus next year, I think I'll pop in my Blu-Ray copy of Silent Night, Deadly Night.