Title – Krampus (2015)
Director – Michael Dougherty (Trick ‘r Treat)
Cast – Adam Scott, Toni Collette, Emjay Anthony, David Koechner, Stefania LaVie Owen
Plot – After things go awry on Xmas eve, young boy Max (Anthony) accidently summons an Xmas demon known as Krampus who will stop at nothing when it comes to ruining the festive season for Max and his family members.
“His name is Krampus. He and his helpers did not come to give, but to take”
Review by Eddie on 20/05/2016
A refreshing change of pace for the horror genre and the Christmas genre and a harkening back to the good old Gremlin like days of the 80’s, Krampus is at first glance an enjoyable experience but as Michael Dougherty’s film journeys on you begin to realise you’re becoming less and less engaged by a movie that has great potential, yet not a great execution.
The anchoring component of Krampus is a pretty dark one when all considered, evil Xmas nasty terrorises a family during the Xmas silly season and Dougherty’s (noteworthy director of the cult favourite Trick ‘r Treat) film is actually a lot more sinister than you’d expect from its rating as Krampus isn’t afraid to dispatch both the young and old and characters as they come and go in quick succession as the body count rises and the possessed ginger breads increase in numbers. It’s neat that the film isn’t worried about ridding itself of a majority of its cast of unlikeable characters but all is mainly for nought as the uneasy balance between dark comedy and horror tropes fail to connect.
The aforementioned Gremlins and films of that bloodline succeed on the back of a near perfect balance of terrors, laughs and heart and while Krampus try’s its utmost to make the audience care for young tyke Max and his family led by parental matriarchs in the form of struggling married couple Adam Scott’s Tom and Toni Collette’s Sarah it’s hard to care at all about if they survive this particularly dangerous yuletide season and the films saving grace ends up being a quality bulldog and some inventive creatures like some bloodthirsty clowns and some unfriendly house invading elves. In the end, whatever life lessons Krampus wants to impart on its viewers, they’re are lost in an event that’s only a small portion of what it could’ve been.
There’s a really fun and entertaining time to be had from Krampus but unfortunately it’s not from Dougherty’s film and in the end Krampus is only a stark reminder that when it comes to these types of hybrid films, the 80’s certainly did it better and in a much more memorable fashion.
2 murderous gingerbread men out of 5