We at BMAF made it no secret that we were looking forward to seeing Krampus, the long awaited new film from Michael Dougherty, director of Trick ‘r Treat.
So did it meet our expectation which were sky high when going into the cinema?
The film opens on a shopping precinct having an equivalent of a Black Friday, the joy of Christmas is forgotten as shoppers push, punch and pull at the cut price gifts.
We then meet the family of the film, the parents Tom and Sarah (Adam Scott and Toni Collette) and their two children, the youngest, Max (Emjay Anthony) and Beth (Stefania LaVie Owen)
Sarah has the house all festive and feast planned for the arrival of her sister Linda (Allison Tollman) and Howard, her husband (David Koechner) along with their 2 children, as well as a baby and a dog, as well as Aunt Dorothy, who appears to be here only for the alcohol.
Family disputes start, Tom gets involved with work, Max is insulted by the cousins who find his lettter that he has written to Santa, hoping his parents can find the love they used to have before day to day work took over, he hopes he can spend more time with Beth, who is now preoccupied with her boyfriend and he wishes for a change of fortunes for Linda and Howard and their family.
Max is distraught when this is found out, tears his letter up and leaves things as they are, this broken wish, will bring the anti Santa, Krampus to visit, and as the film goes on, we find more about this legend though Tom’s grandma (Krista Stadler) via her story, told in a wonderful piece of stop motion animation
The home is hit by a freak snow storm and loss of power, leaving all in the house to sit and wait, not knowing what is coming.
The audience gets the first sign of things to come, when Beth leaves the house to see her boyfriend, only to get lost in the snow. She sees something on top of a building and quickly hides under a stranded vehicle only to be attacked by a Jack in the box and vanish into the snow.
Tom and Howard eventually look to find her, only to find stranded vehicles and to be attacked by something from under the snow.
As the film continues, we know anything could be part of Krampus evil, from the creepy looking snowmen to cute Christmas cookies, used as bait to take a child up through the chimney and a teddy bear.
The film has everything from elves to the tree fairy ready to attack the poor family, as well as the hooven Krampus himself
I have read many reviews from people saying this film is far too slow, but for us it is a great telling of a story, much like Gremlins, which no doubt this will get compared to
The WETA workshop, famous for their work with Peter Jackson excel with the creatures and if that was our only downside to this film, we would like to have seen more of them
The ending does not seem to be liked by other reviewers however we thought it worked very well. We are not going to spoil it for you but we will say we loved this film, and it will become part of our Christmas film viewing for many years to come.
It is certainly not the over sugared films of recent years, but it does deliver a powerful message in the same way that the festive season isn’t about the gifts, it’s about family and being grateful for what we have and not what we don’t have
We certainly hope that Krampus will visit again in a sequel but do you? Have you seen Krampus, did you like it/hate it, either way we would love to hear from you here at Barking Mad About Films