The Shudder horror film “Christmas Bloody Christmas” is the opposite of your conventional Christmas films—there’s no family trying to come together, there’s enough mention of sex and drugs, and then there’s an evil robotic Santa Claus causing violent mayhem. The film does get very drab and repetitive beyond a point, as no stress is given on layers, reasons, or logic as to why all that we see happening is happening and instead focuses on just visually presenting it. “Christmas Bloody Christmas” should not be confused with a good film, as the timing of its release is its only key novelty. If Christmas as a film sub-genre also means the possibility of seeing Santa violently kill children, then “Christmas Bloody Christmas” can definitely be a soothing and entertaining watch at its best parts.
‘Christmas Bloody Christmas’ Plot Summary: What Is The Film About?
In a series of TV advertisements like the ones usually seen before Christmas, it is revealed that a company called Sowell Robotic Products has used cutting-edge robotic technology developed by the US Defense Department to make a Robo-Santa Claus. This RoboSanta+ machine can say 90,000 words, has full realistic motion, and is built with military-grade construction, ensuring that robotics can be used successfully to usher in festive celebrations. It is announced that at the unnamed town that we are about to follow, the RoboSanta+ model will be on display the coming weekend at The Midland Mall and a popular toy store called GW Bonkers.
On the evening of Christmas Eve, protagonist Tori Tooms prepares to close her music record store with her employee, Robbie. Through her conversations with Robbie, it is very evident that the employee, who is also a friend, wants to get intimate with the woman, but Tori teasingly keeps avoiding such a chance. She speaks of a night out with a Tinder date, but Robbie manages to convince her to go for a drink with him first. They walk through the snowy streets to a friend’s shop, which is, incidentally, the GW Bonkers toy store. The couple owning the store, Lahna and Jay, welcome the two and have a few drinks together before Tori and Robbie head to another bar. In this while, the life-sized RoboSanta+ suddenly comes alive on its own and makes its way through the big toy store secretly. While Lahna and Jay are romantically engrossed with each other, the robot gets hold of an ax from the emergency hatchet and brutally kills the couple mercilessly. Robbie decides to drive Tori home and possibly try his luck with her too, but little do the two know that Christmas night is going to be bloodier than they can imagine.
How Does The Robotic Santa Claus Wreak Havoc On The City?
Passing by the GW Bonkers toy store, Tori and Robbie do hear screams from within, but they take it as Lahna and Jay’s revelry. But as they drive towards Tori’s house, RoboSanta+ follows them on foot and reaches the neighborhood. It is about to enter Tori’s house when it hears another man from a different house and decides to make this family its target first. Entering the place, which is lit up for Christmas and has wrapped gifts and festive items all over, Santa kills the man and then his wife. It then spots a young boy, which is the child of the couple, and the boy is confused and excited at the same time. Too bad for him, our robot Santa smashes his ax on the boy and kills him too. During all this time, Tori and Robbie had gotten comfortable in the woman’s house and had then engaged in intimacy, which was interrupted by the loud screams of the young boy next door. Santa soon makes his way over to Tori’s house, and the woman hurriedly wakes up her sister and brother-in-law, who are also in the house. The three of them and Robbie try to think of a way to escape, but the robot is too powerful and clever to dupe. It catches hold of the sister and then the brother-in-law, killing them with the same cruelty as before, while Tori and Robbie manage to escape through the basement. They quickly run to Robbie’s car and try to escape, but the shock of all this and the tremendous amount of alcohol they had consumed through the evening catch up to them. The car crashes against a parked car of one of the neighbors and does not seem to budge. The neighbor comes out to protest the damage to his property and is killed by RoboSanta+. Robbie tries to move the car some more, but it crashes again, and unfortunately, the same fate follows for him. Tori tries to help as much as she can but ultimately has to just watch on as the evil robot Santa smashes his ax into Robbie’s face, instantly killing him.
There is absolutely no reasoning given for the RoboSanta+ machine’s sudden turning into evil, and “Christmas Bloody Christmas” is really that sort of film, which is interested only in presenting the horror without showing any past or logic associated with it. The only information given is through a TV news report about the fact that RoboSanta+ models released in the market were being called back by the manufacturers, Sowell Robotics. This was due to the fact that, although the Santa robots were designed to behave like Saint Nick, they were reverting back to their old firmware. To make matters absolutely horrible, this old firmware was that of soldier robots developed by the US Defense Department. This explains why the Santa Claus machine is almost like an impenetrable tank—nearly impossible to destroy, as Tori soon finds out. She had earlier managed to inform the police of the murderous machine, and it is only now that a police patrol car arrives, just as the Santa is about to attack her after killing Robbie. The policeman, obviously, does not believe the woman, as the other malfunctioning RoboSanta+ models had only caused some minor, insignificant damage till now. The officer acts too confident in dealing with the robot and gets his head blown off by his own shotgun. Tori escapes the scene in the police car and drives away on the highway when she is stopped by another patrol car and an ambulance. The police now suspect Tori to have been involved with the murders since she is in such a bloody state, and she is taken into custody. The police department already had very few staff working due to the festive day, and most of them were sent to Tori’s neighborhood to check the scene. Only the sheriff and an officer stay back at the police station, along with the woman. Santa soon reaches this place, too, with its murderous intent, and easily kills off the officers. Tori and the beastly machine now indulge in a long hide-and-seek chase, with the woman trying her best to survive. She manages to escape the burning police station and drives away in an ambulance, but Santa also hops onto the vehicle and tries to kill the woman.
By now, Tori has realized that the only way for her to survive is to kill or destroy the machine. She rams the ambulance onto another car, which throws Santa off-guard and onto the road. Tori then pushes a car onto it, trapping it under the heavy vehicle, and sets fire to the entire scene. The ambulance and car explode, and RoboSanta+ also catches fire in some parts. Tori rushes into her own store, which is nearby and finds refuge inside while also initially keeping an eye on the burning machine. After a point, she feels that her enemy has been destroyed, but she cannot expect that her fight for survival is yet to be over. While Tori lights up a cigarette to take a breather, RoboSanta+ gets up and walks into the store, its face now almost destroyed and the robotic wires and mechanical skull visible.
‘Christmas Bloody Christmas’ Ending Explained: How Does Tori Finally Bring Down The Evil Santa?
RoboSanta+ starts chasing Tori once more, with its eyes now fallen apart and replaced by rudimentary but menacing laser lights. Tori finds herself a toy sword capable enough to stab someone and uses it against the robot. For a second, it seems like robotic Santa does have a heart, after all, for it stops moving after being impaled by the sword in its chest. Tori moves away and tries calling for help on her phone, but Santa then starts up again and chases after the woman once more. It is perhaps from the many wires visible on the robot’s body that Tori gets a final plan in mind and acts on it immediately. She strikes up a fire to trigger the emergency sprinklers on the roof and manages to bring Santa under it. The water falling onto the open electrical wires causes some massive sparks, and the robot ultimately explodes into fire. By this time, Tori has been injured on her ankle and has also lost a couple of fingers on her hands, but her survival is all that matters to her. As morning breaks, she walks out of the store and emphatically celebrates her victory, lying on the snowy streets all covered in blood.
For a brief first glance, the evil robot Santa’s carnage against all humans might seem to have a moralistic charge because the first two victims, or even Robbie and Tori, for that matter, are extremely against the conventional festivities of Christmas. They do not have families to celebrate Christmas with, and neither are they interested in having any. Tori does mention having to visit her father on Christmas Day, but to her, it is an obligation instead of a show of love. However, the robo-Santa Claus here clearly makes everyone its target, including a young child. The only quirk of “Christmas Bloody Christmas” is that it is so different from the usual films of the season. There is no “Christmas to save” at the end of it since Tori is possibly the only survivor in the entire town; the rest of it has been wiped out by a Santa who does not understand the “spirit of Christmas”, for a change. There are swear words all over the place, and there are really no questions of why or how things happen. Visually, “Christmas Bloody Christmas” will remind of old slasher films, with grainy scenes due to the extensive use of 16mm cameras and the overuse of neon lights in almost every scene of the film.
“Christmas Bloody Christmas” is a 2022 Drama Horror film directed by Joe Begos.