Saturday, December 5, 2015

Krampus spreads creepy Christmas cheer

Movie:    Krampus

Rating:   PG-13

Grade:   B

In a Nutshell:    Described as a comedy horror, “Silent Night, Deadly Night” is what this movie offers to those who are interested in a more ominous Christmas story than the traditional offerings this time of year.   Krampus is “the shadow of St. Nicolas, a much darker spirit – not to give, but to take.” 

This is what happens when “belief is forgotten and the Christmas spirit dies”, so wear your best Santa hat to the theater.

Uplifting Theme:
·         “Don’t give up on miracles and each other.” - Omi
·         “A shepherd’s gotta protect his flock.” – Howard
·         “It’s not what you do, it’s what you believe.” – Omi
·         “Be good.” - Omi

Things I liked:
·         Krampus is actually a real story from German folklore.  The grandma, Omi, speaks German in the movie to add some authenticity to the tale.  There are subtitles for most of the things she says.
·         The talented cast includes Toni Collette, Adam Scott, David Koechner, and Conchata Ferrell.
·         I liked the Universal Studios and Legendary Pictures logos covered in ice at the very beginning of the movie to let you know it wasn’t going to be your average warm and fuzzy Christmas film.  I always appreciate little details like that.
      If you like images like these, then this movie is for you.  If not, you might want to skip it.  (They were taken at Universal Studios to advertise the new Krampus movie and featured during Halloween when I was there.)


·         One of the scariest images is watching Christmas shoppers fight and trample each other on Black Friday at the beginning of the movie.   Ha ha   It’s truly frightening how some people treat each other in the pursuit of materialism.
·         SPOILER ALERT:  The teenage daughter played by Stefania LaVie Owen had such a potty-mouth and crappy attitude that I was relieved when she was knocked off first.
·         There are a few jump-out scares that most people will get a kick out of.  I sat all the way through the ending credits, thinking that there would be a jump-out scare to reward loyal audiences, but nope.  The credits did show, however, cute Christmas pictures from the cast and crew of the film.

Things I didn’t like:
·         Aunt Dorothy (played by Conchata Ferrell) had absolutely no redeeming qualities.  It would be a true nightmare to spend Christmas with someone like that.
·         As a mother of 3 Eagle Scouts, I was mad when Howard made fun of Eagle Scouts!
·         The characters all start bickering within minutes of getting together and that’s long before Krampus shows up!  Of course, that’s part of the storyline, but it’s unpleasant to watch.
·         Some of the timing seems off, making for rough transitions.
·         I don’t like watching and hearing babies cry in movies, but this one is pretty cute.
·         Don’t think too hard, because some things simply don’t make sense in this movie.
·         Creepy Advent calendar.
·         The expressions on everyone’s faces at the end of the movie were kind of weird and I wasn’t sure what director Michael Dougherty was trying to say.

Funny lines:  
·         “Maybe they should have to take a test before they’re allowed to breed.” – Sarah
·         “I also believe in dessert before dinner.” – Omi (Grandma)
·         “Where’s the nog?  I need to get merry.” – Aunt Dorothy  
·         “It looks like Martha Stewart threw up in here.” – Aunt Dorothy as she looks at all of Sarah’s Christmas decorations
·         “I never liked kids, even when I was one.” – Aunt Dorothy

Interesting lines:
·         “Why do we have to put up with all their crap just because we share DNA?” – Max (played by the adorable Emjay Anthony)
“Because that’s what family is.” – Tommy
·         “Hot chocolate makes everything better.” – Omi    (True)

Tips for Parents:
·         Quite a bit of profanity, including an F-bomb.
·         There are creepy versions of snowmen, elves, and Santa Clause that might frighten young children.  Kids aren’t going to like Jack-in-the-Box and maybe even gingerbread cookies anymore.
      People, including kids die.
      While the ultimate message is good, it's not a happy, care-free Christmas movie for the entire family.

Tips for surviving a Krampus visit:
·         Keep the fire hot.
·         Get a back-up generator
·         Stock up on firearms and ammo
·         Know where your fire extinguisher is
·         Start believing in Santa Clause again 
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