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Palmetto & Pine

Have a Merry Scary Christmas!

Not wanting the spooky season to end? Well, don’t worry, it doesn’t have to! If you’re looking for some good Christmas movies to watch but you’re still missing Halloween, we’ve got some of the perfect movies for you. Check out some of our favorite Christmas thrillers!
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Karina Paskaleva
Although it may seem unexpected, the holly, jolly Christmas season does offer some good opportunities for some twisted tales.

Christmas is a holiday loved by all, with it traditionally being a time of jolly spirits, singing carols, and watching Hallmark movies. But it’s understandable that a lot of people are looking for something a bit more interesting and maybe even a bit frightening to watch this Christmas. Although it may seem unexpected, the holly, jolly Christmas season does offer some good opportunities for some twisted tales. For example, in 1843, Charles Dickens wrote the original Christmas Story about a man who gets tormented by multiple ghosts on Christmas Eve! It even used to be a tradition to tell ghost stories on Christmas Eve. Nowadays, this is a forgotten tradition, and Christmas is mainly about joy and giving to the people you love. But this didn’t stop movies from giving Christmas a twisted and frightening spin. So, if you are looking for some thrilling movies this Christmas season, let me tell you about some of my favorites!

Gremlins (1984)

We can start with a classic story, the 1984 film Gremlins, an American comedy-horror perfect for the Christmas season. What do you think happens when you steal an unknown creature from an underground shop in New York City? You find yourself with a Gremlin. The unique, Ferebee-like creature named Gizmo is given to one of our main protagonists, Billy, as a present for Christmas. Gizmo is fluffy, adorable, and he sings! But there’s a small catch, Billy is told that he must follow three very important rules: keep him out of the light, out of water, and no matter what, he must never be fed after midnight. But still, all seems normal until the most important rule is broken, and the once cute critters take on a bit of a transformation. The Gremlins each have different interesting personalities; Alex Arcilla, a movie lover, found Gizmo’s character to be extremely lovable, stating that “Gizmo was very intuitive when he created the bow and arrow with the coat hanger and pencil.” Gremlins is an engaging movie that does an incredible job of creeping out its audience. It’s terrifying but hilarious and perfect to watch with the family this Christmas! Plus, if you couldn’t get enough of the first movie, Gremlins is a trilogy!

Violent Night (2022)

This one is less of a thriller and more of a gory action movie, but since it’s a more recent film, and a good one, too, I felt that it deserves a shoutout. I highly recommend checking out the 2022 film Violent Night. In this film, starring David Harbor as Santa, we follow the extremely wealthy Lightstone family as they gather for Christmas. But this family’s Christmas doesn’t go as expected when they’re faced with a gang of elite mercenaries attempting to steal their wealth. Everything seems to go exactly as planned for this villainous gang until one bearded old man with a special skill for giving gifts and taking lives gets in their way. Violent Night has an intriguing story, good humor, and a ton of unique and festive deaths. Trust me, just because this is a Christmas movie does not mean they hold back with any of these kills; Santa does not mess around when a kid is in danger. The concept may sound ridiculous, but this film actually has some emotional and serious moments between Santa Claus and our secondary protagonist, a young girl named Trudy Lightstone, the one girl who still believes in him. There’s just something so special about this film. So, if you’re looking for something festive, fun, and a bit dark this holiday season, don’t miss out on watching this amazing movie.

Krampus (2015)

This is the most frightening movie I’ll be discussing. Everybody knows the most twisted demon of Christmas, Krampus. He’s an anti-Santa, a dark, evil demon who punishes naughty children. Krampus doesn’t give, but instead, he takes. In this movie, Krampus is an incredibly intimidating villain who haunts an entire family one Christmas for giving up on their Christmas spirit. All it takes to summon him is a couple of words from a little boy named Max, who learns to be careful about what he wishes for. Now, this family must try to work together to protect themselves from the demon hunting them down. But is it even possible to protect yourself from Krampus? Every one of the monsters in this film is absolutely horrifying, with some incredibly unsettling and twisted designs. This movie really does a terrifyingly good job of capturing the dark side of Christmas. There are some startling jump scares, so many insane twists, and the film’s ending genuinely left me shocked. If you’re on the hunt for something twisted to watch, then grab a blanket and some hot chocolate because this is the movie for you!

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About the Contributors
Hayden George, SPHS News Editor
Karina Paskaleva, Photographer

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