Best alternative Christmas movies – Part 3
The Snacks Not Included guide to the best alternative Christmas movies has returned!!!! We decided to come back to you with a whole new slate of Christmas movies after it was announced that John Woo’s Silent Night was coming out this Christmas. Alas, it’s not released here until Christmas Eve so we’re not reviewing it yet, but it gives us more reason to do another list next year that I’m sure it’ll appear on.
Better Watch Out
Step into the shadows of suburbia where innocence meets chaos in “Better Watch Out.” This horror comedy is not your typical babysitter’s night out — it’s a rollercoaster of suspense, laughter, and the unexpected.
On a tranquil suburban street, a seemingly routine babysitting gig takes a chilling turn as a twelve-year-old boy and his babysitter face a night like no other. Intruders lurk in the darkness, but this isn’t your ordinary home invasion; it’s a journey into the heart of the bizarre.
Don’t read too much into it as they’re lots of spoilers out there, just go watch it!!! But warning its is quite disturbing and is either a film you love or hate.
Christmas Horror Story
Venture into the chilling winter nights with “A Christmas Horror Story,” a Canadian anthology horror film that shatters the tranquillity of the festive season. Directed by the trio of Grant Harvey, Steven Hoban, and Brett Sullivan, the film weaves a tapestry of terror, intertwining multiple stories bound together by a spine-tingling framework.
Picture this: William Shatner as your guide through the macabre. The legendary actor takes on the role of a radio DJ, leading you through a twisted journey that will make you question the merriment of the holidays.
Whilst its not the best film in the world, its worth a watch a Christmas if you’re looking for something else to watch.
Enemy of the State
Imagine this: You innocently gift your wife some lingerie for Christmas, and suddenly, you find yourself entangled in a gripping plot involving the NSA. The film stars Will Smith, Gene Hackman and directed by Tony Scott (RIP).
“Enemy of the State” isn’t just a heart-pounding action flick; it’s a thought-provoking exploration of privacy and personal freedoms, themes that resonate even more profoundly in today’s world. As the characters grapple with surveillance and secrecy, the film becomes a timely reflection on issues that have become increasingly pertinent.
And yes, despite the high-stakes drama, this is undeniably a Christmassy movie. The festive backdrop adds a layer of irony and tension to the narrative, creating a unique viewing experience that will keep you hooked from the first frame to the last.
Eyes Wide Shut
Stanley Kubrick does nothing by chance. There was good reason to him changing the location and time of the story from the original novel from Vienna at Mardi Gras to New York at Christmas. Christmas permeates every part of this film, whole scenes are lit up by Christmas lights. Its a time of families coming together and it is a juxtaposition to the family falling apart in the film.
Does Home Alone really constitute an alternative Christmas movie? I dunno for sure, its definitely the most family friendly of all the movies in this list and isn’t close to as dark or a horror thriller like the others, but Abdi wants it on the list and it is a classic and has plenty of comedy action so I guess it qualifies. It also has a cameo by Donald Trump so I guess that is quite horrifying.
Embark on a darkly festive odyssey with “In Bruges,” where the Christmas season becomes the backdrop for a tale of two hitmen seeking refuge. Colin Farrell and Brendan Gleeson deliver standout performances in Martin McDonagh’s debut feature, crafting a narrative that transcends the traditional holiday cheer. It’s definitely one to add to your list.
Kiss Kiss Bang Bang
Kiss Kiss Bang Bang is a 2005 American neo-noir black comedy crime film written and directed by Shane Black, in his directorial debut, and starring Robert Downey Jr., Val Kilmer, Michelle Monaghan, and Corbin Bernsen. It tells the story of a New York thief is sent to Hollywood to train under a private eye for a potential movie role, after being mistaken for an actor, but the duo are thrown together with a struggling actress into a murder mystery.
From Lethal Weapon, to The Last Boy Scout, to The Long Kiss Goodnight, To Iron Man 3 – Shane Black interweaves Christmas into many of his movies and this one is no different.
Krampus is a 2015 Christmas horror comedy film based on the eponymous character from Austro-Bavarian folklore, directed by Michael Dougherty. In the film, a dysfunctional family squabbling causes a young boy to lose his festive spirit. Doing so unleashes the wrath of Krampus, a fearsome, horned demonic beast in ancient European folklore who punishes naughty children at Christmas time. As Krampus lays siege to the neighbourhood, the family must band together to save one another from a monstrous fate.
Now hear me out. Whilst Prometheus isn’t as Christmassy as say Die Hard it still is a Christmas movie and fans of the film have been pushing for it to get its Christmas movie mantle for some time.
With its scenes being held at Christmas in space and it essentially being a nativity story, I think it is.
HBO even went as far as raising a case for it in a tweet a few years back.
It could be a good time to revisit this movie and see if holds up and is much better than we all thought it was on its original release.
Get ready for a festive thrill ride with Reindeer Games, a Christmas heist movie directed by John Frankenheimer and featuring a star-studded cast including Ben Affleck, Charlize Theron, and Gary Sinise. This yuletide tale takes unexpected twists and turns, making it a holiday adventure you won’t want to miss.
Follow the story of an ex-convict who, in a daring move, assumes his deceased cellmate’s identity to win the heart of his girlfriend. Little does he know that this romantic pursuit will plunge him into the heart of a high-stakes casino heist.
Despite the incredible talent on screen, Reindeer Games isn’t aiming for cinematic perfection—it’s all about pure, unadulterated entertainment.
Step into the world of espionage with “Ronin,” the highly underrated Christmas thriller directed by John Frankenheimer and featuring the dynamic duo of Robert De Niro and Jean Reno. While it may not be overflowing with Christmas cheer, this film qualifies as a hidden Christmas gem that deserves a place on your holiday watchlist.
Amidst the espionage thrills, “Ronin” unfolds against a backdrop of Christmas, offering a unique twist to the holiday movie genre. But make no mistake; this isn’t your typical festive fare. Instead, it’s a gripping and ahead-of-its-time thriller that boasts some of the most adrenaline-pumping car chases of its era.
It just qualifies as a Christmas movie but I just want a reason to talk about it as its highly underrated and was upon its release well ahead of its time and had some of the best car chases of the period.
That’s all for this year, but the Snacks Not Included guide to alternative Christmas movies will no doubt return again next season. Look out for the podcast episodes officially launching in January.
Please find the previous best alternative Christmas movie lists below