Best Movies of All Time + [Santas Slay]

SANTA'S SLAY

SANTA'S SLAY2005

"We're trapped in a closet on Christmas with Santa trying to murder us."
-- Nicholas Yuleson
Santa's Slay is a 2005 horror-comedy directed by David Steiman that centers around a world where Santa Claus (Bill Goldberg) spreads fear instead of joy. When Nicholas Yuleson (Douglas Smith) learns the true story of Santa from his grandfather (Robert Culp), he's taken aback by what he hears: one thousand years before, Santa had lost a bet to an angel who forced him to bring tidings of joy and happiness to the world on Christmas Day. Once the millennium had ended, however, he could return to his favorite pastime: murder and mayhem. This particular Christmas marked the end of the bet, and Santa comes to the Yuleson's hometown to wreak havoc. Armed with his new-found knowledge, Nicholas and his friend Mary 'Mac' Mackenzie (Emilie de Ravin) try to survive the consistent attacks from the formerly jolly old Saint Nick while attempting to find a way to stop his murderous path.

After the success I had with watching ThanksKilling last year, I figured giving another holiday-themed horror flick a chance would be a worthwhile endeavor. I mean, who could pass up a flick about a Santa Claus that's coming to town to cause as much destruction as he possibly can? It sounds like surefire "so bad, it's good" gold, right? Well, Santa's Slay delivers... sort of.

We're given a rather interesting - albeit entirely far-fetched - premise to set up this particular tale. An angel in human form challenged the bloodthirsty Santa to a game and set the aforementioned stakes. While it's a tad bit cliché to have this particular Christmas be the one where Santa can break his string of benevolence, we wouldn't have a movie had they not taken that leap. However, the film moves from cliché to cliché when it comes to both horror and comedies, so it doesn't necessarily deliver on the laughs or the scares all that much. I do have to say the opening scene (with familiar faces like James Caan, Fran Drescher and Chris Kattan) set the mood very well, but it all spiraled downward from there. Still, there are quite a few Christmas movie-related references to be heard throughout the flick, so if you're able to pay attention, you'll be in for quite a treat.

The acting isn't necessarily great, but it's not all that terrible either. Goldberg "steals" the show with his turn as the evil Santa, and some of his one-liners are definitely worth a chuckle here and there. Culp and de Ravin are solid and give consistent performances. Unfortunately, the weakest link here is our lead in Douglas Smith. He never really seems to know exactly what he should be doing or what's going on, and that lost look on his face throws out any real appeal as a character.

Still, Santa's Slay could have been a lot worse. It's definitely not a movie anyone would expect to be brilliant, and for what it's worth, it was even entertaining at times. Can I honestly recommend you take the time to watch it? Not quite; however, I think you'd be surprised with how much you might actually like it if you do give it a try.

Movie Review Summary
Grade: D-
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