Horror

7 Horror Films To Watch With Grandma After Christmas Dinner


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Nothing says Christmas Cheer like a holiday orgy.

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You’ve opened presents. You’ve stuffed yourself cookies. You’re drunk on eggnog. Now, you’re ready to settle around the TV with your family to watch a festive movie or two. Sure, you could put on A Christmas Story or Elf, but you’ve seen them so many times. Instead, you could shock your family, especially grandma with a few horror choices on this list. And who knows, you may discover your grandma has the same taste in movies as you!

The Lodge

Nothing screams Merry Christmas like Riley Keough getting mentally and emotionally tortured by two kids. Keough plays Grace who’s dating recently divorced dad Richard whose kids aren’t so keen on his new partner. So when they all go on a wintery holiday vacation, there’s no way it’s going to be a holly, jolly Christmas. On top of that, Richard has to leave early for a work emergency. All alone with two kids who hate her and a blizzard swirling around them, Grace begins to succumb to the traumas of her past. This one is as bleak as it gets. The whole family will be united in absolute despair as the credits roll.

Inside

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No, not Bo Burnham’s special. This is Julien Maury and Alexandre Bustillo’s 2007 horror film Inside. Part of the New French Extremity, Inside will have everyone’s recently stuffed stomachs turning. This does take place during Christmas, so every murder shines underneath sparkling Christmas lights. But there is nothing festive about this one. A woman must evade the clutches of a female intruder who wishes to steal the woman’s baby right out of her womb. Knitting needles are weaponized and there is a particularly menacing pair of shears. Give the gift of nausea this holiday season with Inside!

Eyes Wide Shut

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Nothing tests familial bonds like a two-and-a-half-hour Stanley Kubrick film about sex and fragile masculinity. Now, this is one complicated movie that will almost definitely elicit fascinating conversation if everyone can stave off their food comas. Oh, what I’d do to be a fly on the wall for that discussion. The film follows Bill (Tom Cruise) who’s in a spiral after his wife (Nicole Kidman) admits she has a sexual fantasy about another man. So he decides to get revenge and have an affair. Or he tries to anyway and ends up thrown into a secret world full of sex and power. What will be quite divisive for the group is the centerpiece orgy scene full of naked women and bizarre rituals. Sure, it’s not a horror movie persay, but parts. of it are horrifying. Some will be fascinated, some will be offended. It’ll be interesting to see where that divide falls.

You’re Next

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You know what makes for a great family gathering? A horror movie about a dysfunctional family getting picked off one by one by masked assassins. Adam Wingard’s 2011 film You’re Next is all about a very rich, very entitled family gathering for their parents’ anniversary. There’s no hiding the resentment that exists between each and every person, from sibling rivalries to frustrations with parents. So when the arrows start flying, you almost don’t feel bad for them. Instead, you root for outside Erin (Sharni Vinson), a new girlfriend thrown into this chaos. Your partner may especially identify with Erin depending on your own family dynamics. So throw this up on the TV and see what everyone thinks!

The Visit

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M. Night Shyamalan is a divisive director. You could pick anything in his filmography to encourage lively, discussion, but his winter-y found footage horror The Visit is the perfect Christmas choice. Two kids are sent to their grandparents’ house for a week. But the kids quickly notice something is wrong with their grandparents. As the days pass, the kids get more terrified at what’s in store for them. It’ll have you side-eyeing grandma for sure. This one may hit particularly hard if you have sick or recently passed family members, so proceed with caution.

Delicatessen

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Now, if you want something weird, funny, and about cannibalism, Jean-Pierre Jeunet and Marc Caro’s 1991 Delicatessen is the move. It’s enough about cannibalism to make the family a little woozy, but not enough to make them lose their Christmas cookies. It’s a post-apocalyptic love story with some incredible style and pitch-black comedy that may just surprise grandma. That’s not to say it’s everyone’s taste, but it’s definitely the most fun on this list.

Taxidermia

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If you’re ready to test your family’s grit and stomachs, then turn on the 2006 Hungarian surrealist nightmare Taxidermia. There is a lot of eating in this one. In fact, one character is a professional eater and we get to see all of the nasty rituals that go along with such a profession. Taxidermia is a multi-generational tale that moves through World War II, the Cold War, and the modern day. It’s grotesque, it’s nasty, and it’s beautiful to behold. But your family may not agree. The only way to find out is to gather ’round the glowing television and press play.

Tags: Eyes Wide Shut The Lodge The Visit You’re Next

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