Santa’s Slay – USA, 2005

‘He’s making a list… pray you’re not on it!’

Santa’s Slay is a 2005 American dark comedy horror feature film written and directed by David Steiman. The movie stars former professional wrestler Bill Goldberg as Santa Claus.

Plot:

On Christmas Eve of 2005, the Mason family is enjoying Christmas dinner when Santa Claus (Bill Goldberg) comes down the chimney and kills them all. This opening scene includes tiny cameo roles from several famous actors, including James Caan, Fran Drescher, Chris Kattan, and Rebecca Gayheart.

santas-slay1

Riding on his sleigh driven by his “hell-deer”, Santa arrives at Hell Township and proceeds to kill the locals in various holiday-themed ways. In one of his slaughters, Santa kills the occupants of a local pole-dancing club frequented by Pastor Timmons (Dave Thomas), a crooked minister who manages to survive the massacre. Later, Santa murders the local deli owner Mr. Green (Saul Rubinek) using his own menorah.

 

Meanwhile, teenager Nicholas Yuleson (Douglas Smith) is living with his crazy grandfather (Robert Culp), a crackpot inventor who has created a bunker in their basement to survive Christmas. When Nicholas asks Grandpa why he hates Christmas, he is shown “The Book of Klaus”, which reveals the true origins of Santa Claus…

Reviews:

“Look, Santa’s Slay is no masterpiece by any measure (in fact, Steiman hasn’t written or directed anything since, unfortunately), but it’s enjoyable as hell if you can go with the bloody flow. If not, it’s coal down your windpipe!” Allusions of Grandeur

“The dialogue and shots are hilarious if you can get into that completely juvenile, Beavis and Butthead-style state of mind. I was especially laughing at one of the victims shouting “No! Santa, no!” for the sheer ludicrousness of her casually referring to this guy as Santa.” Cinema de Merde

“Any film that can kill both Fran Drescher and Chris Kattan within the first ten minutes is a keeper… it’s just the remaining 90 minutes that made me blow egg nog all over the place. Santa’s Slay is the writing and directing debut of David Steiman and it appears he hasn’t worked since. Good.” Cinema Head Cheese

“The script is simply awful. It fills itself with Christmas puns and referential humor that almost all falls flat. Various holiday paraphernalia ends up utilized as murder weapons, from wreaths to menorahs to candy canes. It’s like they went down a list of things associated with Christmas, came up with a way to kill someone with it, and put every single one into the film.” Classic-Horror

” …the conventional finale doesn’t negatively impact the film to such an extent that it’s not worth seeing; with its brisk pace and off-kilter sense of humor, Santa’s Slay is a worthy addition to the Christmas horror subgenre (and is surely an improvement over certain other killer Santa-themed flicks, i.e. Silent Night, Deadly Night). Reel Film

” …some clever moments, a fairly talented cast, effects that range from pretty good to terrible-in-a-funny-way, a lot of fun holiday music, and Fran Drescher being burned and drowned.” Something Awful

“Sure, Gremlins are cute and Jack Frost has more chance of popping up where one least expects him (like the shower!), but there’s something about the incomparable Santa’s Slay that captures the magic and fun and madness of Christmas, in a way that no other film of its ilk does. It’s probably not your first choice for holiday viewing, but it really should be.” UK Horror Scene

Santa’s Slay is the definition of dumb fun. It’s fast, entertaining, and all around not a bad film to revisit annually with a group of friends on a cool night with an Irish Coffee or five. While not all the jokes work and Goldberg’s future acting career seems less than promising, it’s best to just sit back and turn your brain into the off position.” Upcoming Horror Movies

Cast and characters:

  • Bill Goldberg … Santa
  • Douglas Smith … Nicolas Yuleson
  • Emilie de Ravin … Mary ‘Mac’ Mackenzie (as Emilie De Ravin)
  • Robert Culp … Grandpa
  • Dave Thomas … Pastor Timmons
  • Saul Rubinek … Mr. Green
  • Rebecca Gayheart … Gwen Mason
  • Chris Kattan … Jason Mason
  • Fran Drescher … Virginia Mason
  • Alicia Lorén … Beth Mason
  • Annie Sorell … Taylor Mason (as Annie M. Sorell)
  • Donna Zuk … Mrs. Talbot
  • Scott Francis Gibson … S.W.N.D.S.U. Place Kicker
  • Kevin Gillese … Disgruntled Youth
  • Don Bland … Bouncer (as Donald Bland)
  • Christian Fraser … Bartender

Filming locations:

Wetaskiwin and Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

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