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For every great holiday movie just like It's a Wonderful Life, there are cinematic epic failures. Here's the worst of them all.
The criteria is the same as the Best Chirstmas Movies (must have been in a movie theatre, silent era through current times) and must have been an real bad movie to stink up reviewers' noses like reindeer droppings.
Any slasher movie with a Christmas theme/background. In this bloggers' opinion, slasher flicks are okay for Halloween, but at Christmas time, they happen to have a snowman's chance in Hades of succeeding. The most imfamous of them all was the 1984 flick Silent Night, Deadly Night, in which the killer was dressed as Santa Claus, and the victim's son is traumatized. Siskel and Ebert read the credits out loud on their show and muttered "Shame, Shame" after reading each one, and Leonard Maltin gave it a no-star rating. Even Tri-Star Pictures (now part of Sony Motion Pictures Entertainment) pulled the low-budget film a few weeks after the release date. Others that earned the dishonorable mention include two versions of Black Christmas (the original directed by Bob Clark of A Christmas Story fame), the non-Michael Keaton version of Jack Frost, and a Bill Goldberg starring movie Santa Slay. Frankly, he was much better off as a
professional wrestler fake fighter.
Santa Claus. R.D. Reynolds, the founder of the fake fighting site wrestlecrap.com, takes one month out of the year to actually take a look at some of the worst Christmas movies ever. Here's his brief synopsis of this Mexican film:
- "[A] weird Mexican movie. In this flick, Santa spies on the children of the world (and also holds some captive) and fights Satan with his magical parasol. Hey, I couldn't make this stuff up."
He also lives next door to Merlin! Who knew?
Santa Claus Conquers the Martians. This 1964 film featured a very young Pia Zadora, long before her future rich daddy husband wined and dined Golden Globes voters to vote for her. It also served as a cinematic commercial for Marx Toys - in as hard as it may seem to believe - the first modern product placement in movies.
Santa Claus The Movie. From the producers of the Superman movies comes this 1985 cinematic dud with David Huddelston in the title role, and a sub plot with Dudley Moore as an elf and John Lithgow as an evil CEO. Fun fact: Slasher film director John Carpenter was originally asked to direct, but also wanted complete control of everything. He was turned down.
Santa with Muscles. Hulk Hogan (born Terrence Bollea), now attempting his bazillionth comeback on the fake fighting circut, plays Blake, a guy who gets amnesia and thinks he is Santa, laying the smackdown on Garrett Morris and some bad guys. Notable names here that wasted their careers putting this film on their resume include Brenda Song of Disney Channel fame, Adam Wiley from Picket Fences and That '70's Show and Family Guy star Mila Kunis along with Ron Howard's brother Cliff.
And now we present three special exemptions to our rules. Two were made-for-TV movies that truly - well, we really don't know how they did it, but they did it - stunk. The third movie was added in 2011.
Babes in Toyland (1986 version). This movie was a made-for-TV film in the USA on NBC, but was released in Europe in movie theatres. Drew Barrymore (post-E.T. and pre-rehab), Keanu Reeves (after Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure and before Speed) and Pat Morita (someplace between two stints as Arnold on Happy Days and zen master to both Ralph Macchio and Hilary Swank in The Karate Kid series) under the direction of Clive Donner (who also directed George C. Scott two years earlier in a made-for-TV version of A Christmas Carol) and featuring Googy Gress as Georgie Porgie with a noticable "camel toe". Please write your punchlines now.
Santa Who? You know, Leslie Neilsen was a great actor until he got the roles in Airplane! and The Naked Gun TV series and movies. Then he gets typecast as bumbling idiots in every spoof they could come up. So why did ABC feel that in 2000 we would see him as Saint Nick with amnesia. In New York City. And even worse, in what seems to be a rip off of the plot of Miracle on 34th Street? Why?
A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas. Do we really want to tell you about this lame waste of celluoid offending every known person nnd religion. When the DVD comes out, I suggest you make an enimies list to "give them this gift".
Did we leave anything out of the naughty list of movies? Please tell us. We'll be waiting for it.