The Lodge (2020) : This movie doesn’t have a ton of Christmas cheer — no Santa, no elves — but it is incredibly chilling. Riley Keough stars as a woman who is going to take her fiancé’s kids to his vacation cabin for a few days over the Christmas break before he can join them. When she starts to experience supernatural events, seemingly connected to her past, she has to figure out if it’s her mind playing tricks on her, or if the scares are real.
Black Christmas (2019) : You can actually choose between three versions of Black Christmas: There’s the (excellent) 1974 original with Margot Kidder and Olivia Hussey, the 2006 remake directed by X-Files alum Glen Morgan or the most recent take on the material, the 2019 remake, with a female writing/directing team of Sophia Takal and April Wolfe. All versions of the film follow a group of sorority girls as they’re stalked by a terrifying stranger during their Christmas break. I’ve only watched the 2006 version which is ok.
Saint (2010) : What if instead of a kindly old man, Santa Claus was blood-thirsty, murderous bishop? That’s the reimagining you can expect from this Dutch horror-comedy, also subtitled, which says that Sinterklaas turns evil when St. Nicholas Day coincides with the full moon. I got a bit bored watching this movie. It promised a lot more but fails in the end. I actually watched this on Christamas Eve 2011.
Dead End (2004) : A family tries to take a shortcut on the way to their Christmas Eve dinner — which turns out to be a grave mistake. Some supernatural/paranormal things seem to happen, but the true horror might be the extended time spent in close quarters with family. I remember feeling very uncomfortable as the mother, played by Lin Shaye, loses her mind.
Gremlins (1984) : Don’t be fooled by Gremlins’ seemingly warm and fuzzy exteriors — these little creatures are not as sweet as they look. (If you’ve seen this 1984 Joe Dante classic, you know.) Gremlins is a Christmas movie the way Die Hard is a Christmas movie, where the holiday is mostly a backdrop for a lot of mayhem. Of all of these films, Gremlins is my favourite and it also falls in my list of favourite films and nostalgic movies. I’ve watched it many times and watched it with my cousins as well. Gizmo is so cute!