Red Christmas (2016) Movie Review
Written By: FZ
Edited By: Grave Reviews Staff
Director: Craig Anderson
Writer: Craig Anderson
Producers: Craig Anderson, Brett Garten, Artie Laing, et.al.
Date Released: June 17, 2016
Dee Wallace as Diane
Geoff Morrell as Joe
Janis McGavin as Ginny
Gerard O’Dwyer as Jerry (as Gerard Odwyer)
David Collins as Peter
Sam Campbell as Cletus
Sarah Bishop as Suzy
Bjorn Stewart as Scott
Deelia Meriel as Hope
Rating = 2/5 Graves
***May contain some spoilers***
This is the story about a family celebrating Christmas in Australia which tragically ends in bloodshed. The premise centers around the premise similar to a Christmas ghost that comes knocking at the door brought about by the past. The celebration quickly turns blood red when the stranger arrived at the estate claiming that the matriarch is his long-lost mother who aborted him some twenty years ago. Then it turns into a fight for survival instead of a jolly Christmas gathering.
The film has tons of instances of violence. There is a scene of a man’s bloody face is stuck on a table saw, sawed in half, a woman is axed in half and characters were killed in different ways. It is very gory and a high body count.
The Grave Review
Red Christmas (2016) is an Australian Christmas themed slasher and full of brutal kills which makes the movie bleak and dark. Even inside the house it is nearly always dark, the only illumination coming from the numerous Christmas lights dotted around the property that gave different rooms a different lighting. It created a good aesthetic of red, blue and green lit areas rather than traditionally lit rooms.
Red Christmas has a well-paced setup which gives the viewers the chance to sympathize or dislike the family members as dysfunctional as they are. As usually expected in family gatherings, some family members don’t get on well with each other. The actual dialogues between the characters are always good.
The movie is a family drama with brilliant performances, especially by Dee Wallace in the role of Diane, a convincing mother, not just because she, like most mothers would defend her family to the hilt, but in how she reacts to the tragedies going on around her. The rest of the cast are also very good and played each character well.
There is a socio-realism aspect to the movie, the film makers pay attention to the family dynamics, each character has completely subjective opinions that lead to others’ reactions. It reiterates that not every family gets along and can get aggressive with each other. On top of that, religion and morality co-mingle with the conflict that much is present in the film. Abortion is a big theme in Red Christmas but there isn’t really a stance made on whether it is a good thing or not. Diane is painted as the abortion survivor. Her reasons were right for her at the time.
While Red Christmas (2016) was a good slasher, the shaky camera that occurred during the most chaotic moments did not add any value to the quality of the cinematography. The editing seems to be done uncharacteristically rushed.
There is blind logic going on within the family that it sets up plenty of kills, some of which are brilliant to see, and some which are more traditional. Someone gets their head caught in a bear trap, someone else gets chopped in half vertically, death by umbrella, and when someone gets pushed onto a blender which results in torrents of blood spraying out of their eye sockets. Kills are well thought out that with a high body count, no two deaths are the same. The special effects for these deaths are all well done and do look believable.
Overall, Red Christmas (2016) is compelling movie with solid performances and a reasonable content which is far more different from a regular slasher movie with no story but just gore and blood.
Because of the above reasons, Grave Reviews gives Red Christmas (2016) two graves out of five graves.
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