Christmas and being scared aren’t two things you typically think of going together, but there are a surprisingly high number of films that fall into both of these genres. This Christmas the holiday horror movie Krampus is being released, and in honour of that, we’re taking a look at some of the best Christmas horror films of all time.

5 Essential Christmas Horror Films

Rare Exports

Possibly the best film in this alternative genre, it’s also my favourite film from Finland. In what can best be described as a twist on the classic Saint Nicholas myth, here Santa Claus is closer to being a murderous creature than a bringer of joy.

5 Essential Christmas Horror Films

Jack Frost

In 1998 Michael Keaton played a pretty creepy sentient snowman, but just one year before a film of the same name was released, and it was only marginally scarier. They basically have the same plot, but in this version the living snowman goes on a killing spree.

5 Essential Christmas Horror Films

The Nightmare Before Christmas

Some people call it a Christmas film, some people call it a Halloween film, which makes it pretty much perfect for this list. Considered by a lot of people to be a classic, The Nightmare Before Christmas has a lot of fans of all ages.

5 Essential Christmas Horror Films

Silent Night, Deadly Night

Like a lot of horror films, Silent Night, Deadly Night has plenty of sequels with increasingly strange sub titles (my personal favourite being Silent Night, Deadly Night 5: The Toy Maker), and while they’re not all excellent, they do feature somebody dressed as Santa going on a killing spree. Nice.

5 Essential Christmas Horror Films


Not everyone would call this a Christmas film (it’s not exactly Die Hard), and some people wouldn’t call it a horror film, but it’s a true classic, and there will no doubt be plenty of people watching it this year.


Are there any essential Christmas Horror films that we missed? Which is your favourite on this list? Share any thoughts in the comments.