Friday, January 11, 2019

MRS. CLAUS (2018) Slasher Friday Holiday Horrors | Review by Dan Taylor

“I pray that this Christmas fills you – with anguish!”

Remember the good ole days when you could count the number of Christmas-themed horror movies on two hands? BLACK CHRISTMAS, CHRISTMAS EVIL, the SILENT NIGHT flicks, ELVES, DON’T OPEN TILL CHRISTMAS, SANTA’S SLAY and a handful of others provided horror fans jonesing for seasonal fright flicks after Halloween with enough tinsel and gore to make it through all those cookie swaps, holiday parties, and family gatherings.

Thanks (?) to cut-rate budgets, significantly lowered expectations and streaming outlets simply screaming for content, Christmas has become THE destination holiday for horror filmmakers. Take a cursory look at any streaming service and you’ll find yourself knee deep in titles like SLAY BELLES, CHRISTMAS SLAY, RED CHRISTMAS, ALL THROUGH THE HOUSE, CHRISTMAS BLOOD, SECRET SANTA, CHRISTMAS WITH COOKIE: LOCKED AWAY, GOOD TIDINGS and enough Krampus-inspired fright flicks to fill the Manson Family’s stockings.

Troy Escamilla's MRS. CLAUS (2018) – not to be confused with 1996’s MRS. SANTA CLAUS starring Angela Lansbury, Charles Durning and Michael Jeter – finds the horribly annoying sisters of Delta Sigma Sigma celebrating Christmas, bitch, and not any of those made-up holidays.

When the president of the sorority decides to remind one of the newbies “who’s in charge” it all goes horribly wrong and ends with a murder by dong (sorta) and suicide by rope (totally).

No tears were shed by the survivors.

Fast forward a decade and the gals of Delta Sig Squared are back at it, including Danielle (Hailey Strader), the sister of the dead sorority president from earlier in the film. Now, you might be asking yourself, why would she pledge the same sorority where her sister was murdered? And you would not be alone, as one character asks the exact same question.

Danielle, who is dating the brother of sorority sister Kayla (Heather Bounds), continually forgets that her sister was a serious bitch and doesn’t seem capable of handling stories about her dead sibling. Who, may I remind you, was a serious and total bitch.

Once again, “why would you pledge the same sorority where your sister was murdered? I don’t get that.” None of us do, none of us do.

Eventually, the titular Mrs. C starts sending cryptic e-mails and the poorly attended Delta Sig holiday party turns into a D-grade BLACK CHRISTMAS as sorority gals, weirdoes, potheads, horny jocks and a campus rent-a-cop (genre vet Brinke Stevens) become victims and/or suspects in this Yuletide slasher.

Admittedly, I absolutely HATED this flick upon first viewing and wasn’t even going to bother giving it a review. But the holiday spirit – is that you, Mrs. Claus?! – moved me and I gave it another shot. A second viewing made me feel slightly more charitable to the proceedings and I’d give it a grudging recommendation as long as you know what kind of low-budget holiday hell you’re wading into.

I’d also recommend being slightly buzzed. – Dan Taylor

Dan Taylor is the editor/publisher of Exploitation Retrospect and The Hungover Gourmet. He is determined to finish up reviews of the other holiday horrors he watched. 

MRS. CLAUS is available from Amazon.

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