Santa's Slay (DVD)
Starring Bill Goldberg, Douglas Smith, and Emilie de Ravin
Directed by David Steiman
Released by Lion's Gate Home Video
Though, the weather outside is frightful, and brother, the inside ain't much better. Especially with the great jolly one on a murderous rampage. Times sure have changed. I remember back in 1984 everyone was in an uproar over a film titled Silent Night, Deadly Night. Parents were picketing. Everyone was calling for the film to be banned. Yadda yadda. And why? Because the killer in the film wore a Santa Claus suit. He never claimed to be Santa. He was never portrayed as the actual Santa. He just wore the damned suit.
Fast forward to 2005, and we have former WWE grappler Bill Goldberg in the infamous suit and being portrayed as the real thing, and guess what? Nobody cares. Go figure. There is a core group of horror lovers that should care though as Santa's Slay is a mindless and, dare I say it, fun and unapologetic romp through the realm of bad yuletide taste.
The story is actually a great take on the character. Personally, I would have liked to have seen it played straight instead of for laughs, but ya can't have everything. Apparently Santa was originally born as Satan's son, and once a year he travels the world killing and maiming the innocents. Just like his dad, he has an appetite for all things considered evil -- including gambling. Santa ends up making a bet with an angel and of course loses. What has he lost you ask? Instead of his usual yearly murderous rampage, he has to instead be nice and spread joy and love for a thousand years. Of course you realize that his pleasantry sentence is now over, and with demon buffalo in tow, he sets out to paint the town red.
Santa's Slay never takes itself seriously and never tries to be anything that it's not. The film doesn't want to play nice and seemingly revels in its mean-spirited atmosphere. Director Steiman pokes fun at just about every holiday tradition including one of my childhood Christmastime staples, the old Rankin and Bass claymation holiday specials. The murders are nothing too gory; in fact they're ridiculously humorous. Need to see someone getting impaled by a menorah? Look no further! Wanna see an old lady get run off the road by a sled? Santa's got your hook-up. True, it's nothing groundbreaking and at times can be a bit muddled, but I had a damn good time watching it, and in the end, that's all that matters.
Speaking of good times, the extras are a blast! Along with the usual cast and crew interviews, we get some peeks into how the sleigh effects were done and also how producer Brett Ratner got his celebrity friends to come in for the film's opening. It's apparent that everyone involved in the production had a great time, and nowhere was it more apparent than in the laugh out-loud goodness of this film's gag reel.
Santa's Slay is not perfect. Hell, it's not even gory. Maybe it's got some of the unexplainable Christmas magic going for it. Who knows. One thing's for sure though: Goldberg's bad Santa makes Billy Bob's look like a saint! Not a bad bet for some quick ho ho horror!
Three production feaurettes
Discuss in our forums!