The Moya View

Violent Night: This Is One Die-Hardened Santa

Courtesy of Universal Pictures

Plot via IMDB:

When a team of mercenaries breaks into a wealthy family compound on Christmas Eve, taking everyone inside hostage, the team isn’t prepared for a surprise combatant: Santa Claus is on the grounds, and he’s about to show why this Nick is no saint

I’m one of those film fans that thinks Die Hard is the perfect Christmas picture. Christmas for me means meeting my family, catching up, and after a few days, wanting to kill them. Gifts, peace and joy, with some murderous thoughts are what I want from my family holiday reunions. Gifts, mayhem and murder are what I want in my Christmas flicks. Give me a Bad Santa or even Mel Gibson’s revisionist Santa fable, Fatman over Miracle on 34th Street or It’s a Wonderful Life any day.

Courtesy of Universal Pictures

Violent Night, starring David Harbor from Stranger Things as a disenchanted Santa, is destined to be a holiday classic in this sub genre of violent Kris Kringle movies. The requisite mayhem and violence are present, some of it exquisitely Grand Guignol and perfectly comically timed.

Courtesy of Universal Pictures

It’s also self-aware and meta, knowing not only the Santa canon and movie lore, but intentionally homaging them, Home Alone in particular. Beverly D’Angelo of National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation even shows up playing the foul-mouthed matron of the family held captive..

Courtesy of Universal Pictures

Most importantly, Violent Night keeps its Christmas heart intact. It’s Santa’s conversion story, a turning back to finding meaning in the simple act of gifting presents that can triumph over the rampant commercialism and capitalistic sheen. The nice list crowd gets their true Christmas wishes granted. The bad list side gets no coal but their just desserts- impalings with lethal Christmas supplies, beheadings and assorted mad hammering. For these truly deserving bad boys and girls forgiveness was never an option. Their reindeers and up the chimney magic too. There is no doubt this dude is Santa, but with righteous kick ass attitude.

Courtesy of Universal Pictures

Violent Night’s Die Hard credentials are constantly being homaged. There is the seige, the hostage taking, the story by story dispatching of villainy. John Leguizamo’s code name Scrooge character is a direct duplicate of Alan Rickman’s Hans Gruber. Even Santa’s Ho Ho Ho motherfucker riffs the John Mclane/Bruce Willis famous retort.

Courtesy of Universal Pictures

Violent Night manages not only to bake its gingerbread men but eat it too. This movie will be sneakily streamed by parents long after their sugarplum children have gone to sleep with dreams of the Fatman’s arrival.

Courtesy of Universal Pictures

Violent Night gets a 3.5 out of 5 or a B+.


Directed by

Tommy Wirkola

Written by

Produced by



Matthew Weston

Edited by

Jim Page

Music by

Dominic Lewis


87North Productions[1]

Distributed by

Universal Pictures

Release dates

  • October 7, 2022(NYCC)
  • December 2, 2022(United States)

Running time

107 minutes[2]


United States



$20 million[3]

Courtesy of Universal Pictures





Leave a Reply

The Good Nurse: Meds and Murder on the Side
%d bloggers like this: