(Welcome to Now Scream This, a column where horror experts Chris Evangelista and Matt Donato tell you what scary, spooky, and spine-tingling movies are streaming and where you can watch them.)

Matt: Deck, the halls with torment and bodies, fa la la la la – you get my drift. Yes, SlashFilm. It’s a very special Christmas horror edition of “Now Scream This,” as the smell of gingerbread attempts to overpower the burning embers left behind in Krampus’ wake. Zombie elves, exploding presents, murderous snowmen who stalk their pretty to tropical island resorts…you won’t find these titles in the Hallmark Channel’s rotation. Unless Hallmark got rad as hell and unleashed winter massacres on unsuspecting families in primetime. Cowards.

Chris: Happy Holidays, boils and ghouls. Matt and I have loaded up on eggnog, donned Santa hats, and are ready to bring you some holiday horror! The fact of the matter is, there are a lot of Christmas horror movies. Too many, in fact! And many of them are terrible, and usually variations on the same theme: someone dressed as Santa, or Santa himself, kills people. And that’s fine, if that’s your thing. But for this very special Christmas Now Scream This, we wanted to give you some variety. The films don’t have to take place on Christmas (although they can), but have to at least invoke some sort of Christmas feeling, vague as that might be. So string up the lights, stuff the stockings, and stream these films by the light of the Christmas tree. 

A Christmas Horror Story

Now Streaming on Shudder

Matt: Starting this week swinging haymakers for A Christmas Horror Story with a simple statement: Rob Archer’s Krampus showcases the Christmas demon’s top cinematic form. Better yet? That’s not even this seasonal horror anthology’s calling card. Segments range from changeling children to found footage investigations – all narrated by William Shatner’s radio DJ “Dangerous” Dan – but there’s a clear winner in terms of segment comparison here. A finale that goes *all-in* on Santa’s elves turning into flesh-hungry zombies who threaten Mr. Claus. Decapitations are plentiful as St. Nick hacks through his undead helpers with a golden scepter, and that’s BEFORE Santa throws down with Krampus in a heavyweight bout. Bailey Downs may suffer from a “Christmas curse,” but it’s a damn cinematic treat at the least.

Chris: I’ve never seen this, but I have seen the poster. Does that count? Happy Holidays!

Better Watch Out

Now Streaming on Shudder

Matt: Chris Peckover’s Better Watch Out is an odd Christmas horror enigma. Brilliantly executed Home Alone genre twists and a lead performance that smacks of Michael Madsen in Reservoir Dogs, but I shan’t say more. Why? Better Watch Out hinges itself on a pretty massive left turn that’s best appreciated with virgin eyes, and here’s where my “enigma” comment comes back into play. Despite relying heavily on shock cinema, a second watch somehow gets *better.* Meticulous details unravel in a way that showcases Peckover’s finely tuned direction and attention to the smallest, tightest details. I’ve said too much, but also nowhere near enough praise. Not bother. Hop on Shudder and watch this one with Grandma this Christmas!

Chris: I know the horror community loves this movie, but gosh almighty, I was not a fan. I’ll admit there’s a clever twist here, but the performances are weak, and the script is childish. This could’ve been great! But it’s not for me.

The Blackcoat’s Daughter

Now Streaming on Netflix and Amazon Prime

Matt: Throwing a shout-out to “Film Twitter” here because while I’m rather lukewarm on The Blackcoat’s Daughter, so many writers I respect and follow champion Oz Perkins’ slow-burner like the second coming. You’ll recognize Sabrina aka Kiernan Shipka, along with stars Emma Roberts and Lucy Boynton. Perkins’ cast and disturbing winter break darkness singe the screen, which helps substantiate dawdling plotlines that I find too stretched, but others praise incessantly. I’m a minority voice here and own that scarlet letter. Who am I to rob the rest of you from what could be a massively underseen horror gem just because my tastes don’t align?

Chris: Forget Sabrina – this is the horror-based title featuring Kiernan Shipka you should be watching.

Jack Frost 2: Revenge of the Mutant Killer Snowman

Now Streaming on Amazon Prime

Matt: By no stretch of logic will I claim Michael Cooney’s Jack Frost sequel is a *good* movie. So why recommend it? You’ll be hard-pressed to find a more incomprehensibly bonkers horror sequel, *especially* among Christmas themed titles. Stock the fridge with Ashai, start chugging, and treat your most adventurous B-movie brethren to a killer snowman goofer that takes place at a sunny resort. Snowball fights turn deadly and actors keep getting spiked with icicles – including Doug Jones – as Frosty unleashes his children thanks to the film’s upped-ante. Adorable little fuzzy puppets who gnaw through flesh like glazed ham. It’s cheapo, sleazy 2000s late-night absurdity chilled to the core. I’ll even start you off with a drinking game rule to get your creativity going: drink every time you question if Club Dread yanked “inspiration” from Jack Frost 2: Revenge of the Mutant Killer Snowman.

Chris: I’ve seen the first Jack Frost, but not this sequel. I’m sure it’s really good, though.

Bride Of Chucky
Now Streaming on Netflix

Matt: Ready for my justification? Bride Of Chucky could squeak into December marathons based on themes of family and Chucky’s identity as a child’s plaything. Don Mancini’s magnificent franchise pivot hit Netflix not too long ago, therefore it’s my Tiff-appointed duty to alert as many readers as possible of such wonderful news. Consider this a Christmas present to yourself. By and large the greatest Child’s Play entry, now available to watch any time the mood strikes. The definition of a Christmas miracle if you ask me, just with more Martha Stewart jokes, voodoo serial killer souls, and the game-changing addition of Jennifer Tilly to Chucky’s canon. Hot Topic would never be the same after 1998’s October movie season.

Chris: Child’s Play is my favorite horror franchise. I’ll always prefer the earlier films (Child’s Play 2 is my favorite), but Bride of Chucky is a hell of a lot of fun. And sure, why not watch this for Christmas? Why not?

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