VIOLENT NIGHT is a new Christmas horror-comedy out in theaters now. It has references to both Home Alone and Die Hard, while the death scenes are crazy horror-comedy. It starts off slow but ends pretty awesome. Read our full Violent Night movie review here!
VIOLENT NIGHT is a new Christmas horror comedy out in movie theaters now. It has clear references to both Home Alone and Die Hard. The death scenes – of which there are many – are pure horror comedy in their craziness.
David Harbour is absolutely perfect as Santa Claus. He has both the physical form it takes and the extremely dark comedy down perfectly.
Although Violent Night starts a little slow, it is primarily to set the stage for the all-time wild ending. Yes, there are some slow passages along the way. However, this is almost the case for all Christmas movies – regardless of the genre – because we do need to get the true Christmas spirit included as well.
Still, I could easily imagine watching Violent Night again next Christmas… and the Christmas after that. Yeah, I’m a fan. We don’t do half-stars here, but I’d give it a solid 3½ if we did!
Continue reading our Violent Night movie review below. Find it in theaters from December 2, 2022.
David Harbour is Santa Claus
David Harbour gets to play quite a few iconic roles these years. While Stranger Things is what made him a very familiar face, his movie career following the premiere of that Netflix series has been impressive. He was the “father” of Black Widow in the film about that Marvel superhero. I write “father” since his character was not biologically her father, but they were an undercover family of spies.
And then David Harbour played Hellboy in the Neil Marshall film of the same name. Regardless of what you think of that film, it’s easily the best Neil Marshall has done on the film side in years. But of course, that doesn’t say much either.
Having played those other characters, David Harbour is now Santa Claus in Violent Night. A character that works remarkably well. Especially with the exciting new backstory, we get.
That and the fact that Santa Claus is a bitter and very drunk person, which David Harbour also plays very well. In the case of this movie, he has a very valid reason; Children these days just want more all the time and are never happy. As a result, Santa isn’t happy and is ready to just give up.
However, quitting the job of Santa Claus isn’t that simple. He probably wouldn’t even know how since he’s still only just beginning to fully understand all the Christmas magic that his life has been influenced by for centuries.
Home Alone meets an extra bloody Die Hard
Yes, Violent Night is ultimately a bit of an extra gory Die Hard. Maybe it’s because it’s Santa who smashes and slashes one villain after another with a sledgehammer or an ice skate. Or because others are killed in very creative ways that we know so well from horror comedies.
And this is where the Home Alone inspiration comes into play. A little girl – who, by the way, still believes in Santa Claus – has just seen Home Alone for the first time, so she quotes it and has good ideas for traps when it all goes awry. However, her traps have a somewhat more fatal outcome than the traps Kevin made in Home Alone.
In other words, they are highly effective!
ANOTHER CHRISTMAS HORROR INSPIRED BY HOME ALONE
Incidentally, both Home Alone (via the little girl) and Die Hard are mentioned directly in Violent Night. Basically, the movie pays homage to these two iconic Christmas movies – both of which are mandatory to watch every year in December.
As the most amazing bonus, the female head (of the extremely rich family that is the focal point of Violent Night) is played by Beverly D’Angelo. So, the one who plays the sweet mother in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (1989). Another movie I have to watch before it’s really Christmas.
In Violent Night, however, Beverly D’Angelo plays more of a “grandmother from hell” type than the sweet Ellen Griswold from the National Lampoon movies. In addition, you’ll be seeing John Leguizamo (The Night Clerk) as a villain who calls himself “Scrooge”. Yeah, he’s not a fan of Christmas.
Watch Violent Night in theaters now!
Tommy Wirkola is the director of Violent Night, which it’s a pretty good starting point if you’re into horror comedies. He also made the Norwegian Nazi-zombie horror-comedy Dead Snow (2009) and most recently the Netflix horror-comedy The Trip (2021) with Noomi Rapace in one of the lead roles.
The screenplay was written by Pat Casey and Josh Miller. The two previously wrote the Blumhouse production 12 Deadly Days, which is a miniseries on YouTube. This is also a Christmas horror comedy, so you might want to consider giving it a go.
When I watched Violent Night, I can honestly say that it really got me into the Christmas spirit. For the first time this year. So yeah, it delivers on that as well. However, the reason you should watch it is obviously that it’s a crazy, extremely bloody, and quite a wonderful horror comedy!
Violent Night is out in US theaters from December 2, 2022.
Director: Tommy Wirkola
Writers: Pat Casey, Josh Miller
Cast: David Harbour, John Leguizamo, Beverly D’Angelo, Alex Haskell, Alexis Louder, Edi Patterson, Cam Gigandet
When a team of mercenaries breaks into a wealthy family compound on Christmas Eve, taking everyone inside hostage, the team isn’t prepared for a surprise combatant: Santa Claus (David Harbour, Black Widow, Stranger Things series) is on the grounds, and he’s about to show why this Nick is no saint.