This seasonal slash-fest starring Patrick Bergin is a plodding and unimaginative addition to the anti-Christmas genre
This yuletide slasher movie is about as enjoyable as being force-fed a Christmas tree and having it violently pipeclean your insides. It joins Black Christmas, Bad Santa and this year’s Violent Night in the anti-Christmas oeuvre – but its placeholder characters, this’ll-do dialogue and mechanical gallery of kills show that seasonal subversion alone won’t cut it.
Novelist Clara (Beatrice Fletcher) is reeling from her boyfriend Paul (Andy Dixon) cheating on her and decides to bunker down at the country manor of Auntie Marie (Julie Stevens) for the holidays. She needn’t worry too much, though, being a “timeless beauty”, as the local antiques dealer tells her – before fiendishly tweaking his moustache and flogging her a Nutcracker doll as a gift. But when she gets to her destination, it turns out her aunt has gone one better: there is already a 6ft Nutcracker lurking behind the tree. When midnight strikes on Christmas Eve, the wooden soldier’s eyes come ablaze, just as an unfortunate delivery man turns up.