Mother Krampus, Give Us Some Money!
In a small town in England, an evil witch is apparently stalking and taking a different child every day leading up to Christmas. A group of concerned parents seem to know what’s going on and they band together to deal with the menace as best they can. A bunch of years back, kids started going missing and they all blamed a local old woman with the reputation of being a witch. Much like Freddy Krueger, they took her out and gave her a bit of the old mob justice. Now it seems that she has returned from the dead, as an evil spirit or zombie or whatever, and is coming to take her vengeance by snatching their kids and killing them. Or is this the whole truth of what happened so very long ago? Caught in the bitter gaze of the returned witch, one family fights to stay alive, holing up in their home and doing their level-best to repel the witch during her repeated attacks. But they have no real means to fight this evil, and one by one, they start getting picked off. Can they save the little girl who lives there, or will they all die, victims of a vengeful spirit of the dead?
Based on the folktale of Frau Perchta, about a witch that comes during the twelve days of Christmas to steal a different child, this movie has nothing to do with Krampus in any way at all, except the title. Which is all fine and good, if you’ve got a movie worth watching underneath that misleading name. Alas, this one is a bit of a dud. It starts off strong; there’s some really good, creepy moments and the mystery of what is going on is pretty interesting. And then, well, they show the evil witch, and she looks like a woman in a cheap Halloween costume with cheap makeup on and I’m not trying to bash the filmmakers here; you work with what you have. But they shouldn’t have made the choice to show her so much and in such good lighting because she comes across as some kind of cosplay ridiculousness. And then they further compound that problem by having her talk with an evil hiss and oh man, it’s just silly. If they had kept her to the shadows and kept her quiet, they could have milked the creepy factor for a good while, maybe even through the whole thing. The story and acting are both very sincere, and you can tell their instincts are right, but they just don’t have much money. And it really does bog down after the first bit, the middle section dragging on and on for what felt like far too long. Maybe a good chopping of fifteen minutes would have helped out there.
All in all, Mother Krampus isn’t a horrible film. They tried, and they were quite serious about making something mature and thoughtful and scary. But the budget got them good and some of their choices were suspect. I can’t recommend this one except to those who love these kinds of ultra-low budget types of films. You might find a lot to love here. I thought it was just kind of average.