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Review: Reinert Kiil’s Christmas Blood (The Best Santa Slasher Since Silent Night)

Ho ho… oh, this one’s pretty good. Christmas Blood is the new feature film from writer/director Reinert Kiil and it’s hitting DVD and VOD via Artsploitation Films on December 11, 2018. I know that this time of the year is littered with Christmas horror releases, but honestly, Christmas Blood is easily one of the top two films in the catalog. It’s singlehandedly the best Christmas slasher since Steven Miller’s Silent Night remake. A collaboration between Another World Entertainment and Sanctum Film, Christmas Blood is a story about a Norwegian city that’s been under attack by a psychopath dressed as Santa Claus for the last thirteen years. As the snow falls this time around, a group of young women gather for a holiday party with all sorts of unwelcome crashers. It’s a race against time as the ax wielding Santa Claus massacres the women and their friends, but two local detectives are hot on his trail. Will they solve the case in time? Find out with this exciting, holiday horror treat from Reinert Kiil and Artsploitation Films.

Christmas Blood is so moody it’s almost depressing, which is awesome considering most Christmas movies are filled with holiday cheer and bright lights. This one, in particular, is dark and angsty, and doesn’t leave much room for sympathy as the killer Santa turns his victims into gory messes on the floor or red snow mounds in the street. He’s absolutely brutal and unstoppable, and the perfect villain for a movie that’s supposed to be about love and the gift of giving. The atmosphere is so palpable that you start to forget it’s Christmas time in Norway, and wherever you live as you’re watching, and it’s almost like Christmas Blood becomes an amazing year-round slasher instead of just a December slasher. It’s magical, for sure. Props to writer/director/producer Reinert Kiil, producer Joachim Lyng, cinematographer Benjamin Mosli, editor Silje Rekk and special effects lead Elisabeth Mainy for working in tandem to make Christmas Blood as cohesively bleak as it is retro, suspenseful and chaotic. Few have succeeded in making a Yule Tide title this successful. I didn’t even mind the subtitles!

Jorgen Langhelle, Marte Saeteren, Sondre Krogtoft Larsen, Haddy Jallow, Stig Henrik Hoff, Helene Eidsvag, Karoline Stemre, Kylie Stephensen, Yassmine Johansen and Andreas Nonaas star in Christmas Blood. I wish I had more notes in reference to their performances, but the cinematography, the villain and his epic kills stole the show and are the highlight of the movie. All the actors and actresses involved with this picture did a fantastic job. I don’t want you to think they didn’t. In actuality, most of them pulled in remarkable, above-average performances given that this is a horror movie, but, again, they’re not the reason you’re going to say, “wow this is amazing.” Christmas Blood is a shocking, brutal movie with splendid splattering practical effects. Its body count is large and epic, somewhere near ten, if my notes are correct. Yes, some deaths are throw away characters, but most of the on screen kills are saved for snow covered chase scenes and dramatic, unsuccessful fights for survival. Throw in one genuine jump scare and one sadistic as Hell death sequence and Christmas Blood is the perfect present for gore fans.

It’s no secret that I loved this movie. It’s a sleeper hit and has so much unexpected material for such a generic synopsis. This is the movie of the season that you don’t want to miss! Christmas Blood is on DVD and VOD starting December 11, 2018 and I encourage you to add it to your holiday viewing lists right away. Final Score: 8.5 out of 10.

Written by Michael Therkelsen

(Senior Editor)