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  • Writer's pictureMartyn Wakefield


Dir. Michael Dougherty

Reviewer. Dan Cook

Pitched somewhere between NATIONAL LAMPOON'S CHRISTMAS VACATION and GREMLINS, KRAMPUS is a delightfully dark and daft horror comedy that serves as the perfect antidote to the poisonously sweet festive fare that traditionally stinks out cinemas during December.

Featuring an all star cast including Adam Scott, Toni Collette, David Koechner and Allison Tolman, KRAMPUS tells the story of a young boy who wishes for a perfect Christmas but inadvertently summons the arrival of the titular goat-legged demon instead. What ensues is a hair-raising and sometimes hilarious shocker which pits the incredibly dysfunctional and dislikeable family against the seemingly unstoppable forces of the horned one and his many evil minions which include killer gingerbread men, psychotic teddy bears and a horrifying clown puppet with the mouth of Predator.

Directed with panache and verve by TRICK 'R TREAT creator Michael Dougherty, who would later go on to make the spectacular kaiju sequel GODZILLA: KING OF MONSTERS, KRAMPUS crams in a sack full of laughs throughout it's brisk running time and all the cast, young and old, give their individual characters a healthy dose of hateable bite.

However, it is also a solidly nasty little romp with more than its fair share of hard-earned scares and nail-biting tension. All in all, KRAMPUS is a fiercely fun frightener that may lack a particularly strong narrative or three-dimensional characters but bears all of the trademarks of the a Christmas cult classic.

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