By: Remy Carreiro. The good news is, it’s Christmas time. Peace on Earth, goodwill towards men, and all that crap. The bad news is, this may be the first year you are holding the Christmas celebration at your house. You have already decided from decorating to all the cooking that is required, you never want to have to go through this again. So what do you do to ensure that Christmas is never again thrown at your place of residence? I have a rather simple solution, and it even incorporates the most disturbing horror movies ever made. Also, note this is not another movie list about all the classic Christmas horror movies (Black Christmas, Silent Night, Deadly Night). Put those on and most people would just laugh. No, these are the movies you put on and the people in the room flee in genuine terror and disgust. Honestly, is there a better way to introduce myself to the Bloody Disgusting readership than this? No, there really isn’t. These are five brutal, foreign horror movies you play at Christmas to scare your family away.
Inside is a Christmas movie, but only in the sense that it takes place on Christmas eve. Outside of that, the Christmas theme is only set in place to make the whole experience feel more bleak and hopeless.
Inside is film from the French extreme movement about a pregnant woman who is home alone on Christmas eve and she gets a visitor. A woman claiming she broke down and needs help. Obviously you all know horror well enough to know that the woman may have some nefarious intentions. In this case, this stranger wants this woman’s unborn baby. I won’t spoil any reasons why, but trust me when I say, this is NOT a family film. Inside would remain on for about twenty minutes before everyone walks out.
Anyone who has seen this movie is laughing as they read this, trying to imagine how their grandmother and religious aunt (come on, we all have one) would react. Just keep telling your family it is an art-house movie. The reality is Martys is a move that you may initially think is about revenge, but the tone changes quickly. Many call Martyrs one of the most vile and upsetting horror films out there, but I also see it as one of the best.
A film about a fevered cult who think that girls can talk to God if they experience enough pain, Martyrs is ruthless and relentless in its brutality. The perfect movie to play when you want to scare your guests away and have them never come back. You would get about seven minutes into Martyrs before you found yourself, standing alone on Christmas.
You knew there had to be a Gaspar Noe film on this list somewhere, right? Irreversible is the kind of movie that could totally ruin you if you sit down to watch it and know nothing about it. A big part of that is the rape scene that accentuates the middle of the story. Just think how well rape scenes go over at Christmas and you know why this is on the list.
The whole concept of this movie is that your life can pretty much change for the worse in a single day and there is little you can about it. The thing you also need to keep in mind about Irreversible is that it plays in reverse, and opens up with the ending. A harsh scene that you may need to watch again later to realize that it may have not played out like you thought it did. The long and the short is that Gasper Noe doesn’t really believe in happy endings, even when they happen at the beginning.
Seriously, play this movie at Christmas and your family may never look at you the same way. Consider yourself warned. Expect your family to leave about three minutes into this film.
Keep in mind, there is an American remake of this film by the same director, and it is shot-for-shot, so if you are burnt out on the subtitles by now, that is a viable option. I think of all the films you put on so far, this is the one that may keep people around the longest. Why? Because it feels almost like a slow-burn, and compared to the others on the list, there is NO blood at all. But Funny Games does something other horror movies don’t do. It holds the audience accountable. It looks at you and while doing horrible things, it asks: this is what you wanted, right? This is why you are watching, isn’t it? In those moment, it goes from being a film, to being a harrowing, gut-wrenching experience, all centered around one family and one family dynamic. Funny Games is one of those horror movies that is exhausting that, by the time it ends, you feel like you could sob.
In other words, a perfect family Christmas movie! You may actually get about thirty minutes or so into Funny Games before your family realizes these games aren’t very funny.
Excuse when family begins to freak out: Maybe on all days, it is Christmas when we need to realize how lucky we are, and how many injustices are going on in other countries that we don’t even know about.
Quick warning, depending on how far your family gets into this movie, they very well may disown you. I did a rather long write-up of Serbian Film and its many, um, virtues, over at my own site awhile back. I really, genuinely believe that this is the most disturbing movie ever made, and pushes the boundaries in horror that most would not even dare approach. But over time, I have understood more and more why this film was made. Yes, it is unforgivably brutal, but in the same breath, this stuff really goes on over in Serbia, and maybe we all need to know that. Or maybe we don’t, actually. But I digress, lest this turns into some political diatribe.
But I can say this with all confidence: this movie ruins people. Serbian Film is about a former porn star who takes one more job to make the money he needs to get his family out of Serbia, only to find out it is the sickest of all the snuff films ever made. Honestly, there are scenes in this film you would not show an enemy (newborn porn) so the act of showing it to your family could get you disowned. I am not kidding.
Yes, it is THAT hardcore. So bust out Serbian Film only in extreme emergency and if the other four films had no effect.
So while some families may gather around the table eating Christmas dinner and watching Christmas Story, take comfort in knowing your family will be rushing out of your house, gagging, from the movies you chose to put on. Hey look, I just saved your Christmas. You’re welcome. Sorry about the “your family hates you now” thing, but that will pass in time. I am living proof of that.
By the way, can’t believe I just wrote my first Bloody Disgusting article. You all have no idea how honored I am to be here. Thanks so much for reading, and please feel free to pop over to my site, and then hit me up on my Facebook page. This is beginning of a beautiful relationship. -Remy Carreiro