Good Tidings (2016) [Review]

Chris Savage

I think we can all agree, Christmas horror flicks are awesome! We’ve seen a load though, from your average creepy Santa Claus, all the way to a demonic snowman, there’s pretty much something for everyone. Hell, even Bill Goldberg got in on the whole Christmas killing thing with the much overlooked Santa’s Slay. So yeah, festive horror flicks are always a safe bet with us, as I’m sure they’re with many of you.

So, when we heard that Stuart W. Bedford was looking to get in on the whole festive horror thing, we immediately took notice. Bedford, along with Giovanni Gentile and Stu Jopia, they are becoming quite the names to keep your eyes upon, and with their latest effort Good Tidings, these guys have truly arrived.

The film follows three psychopaths, all dressed in Santa costumes as they descend on a disused courthouse which is housed by many homeless residents. Among the homeless is Sam Baker (Alan Mulhall), a war-veteran who has been surviving on the streets before taking the courthouse for himself and many other homeless who have descended upon it. Without their knowing, the crazed masked psychopaths have locked everyone within the walls of the courthouse, as they set out to bring a little festive cheer of their own.

It soon becomes a battle between the homeless and the intruders as they try to make it through the night, but it soon becomes clear that perhaps there is no hope, even on Christmas Day.

The film almost plays out like a twisted version of Home Alone, although, many could argue that Home Alone is already twisted enough as is. But in Good Tidings, it’s the antagonists who are laying out the traps, as they play their little games with their twisted antics and their desire for pain. Speaking of Home Alone, one of the protagonists is wearing a jumper which reads “Merry Christmas you filthy animal”, so maybe Home Alone was a sort of inspiration?

Either way, the film chugs along at a steady pace as we’re introduced to the many characters and then it’s just full on anarchy within the walls of the courthouse. While much of the violence isn’t in your face, it’s still done so well and most of the time it’s done of screen and as such, we only see the aftermath, but it works. Although there is a few spots of CGI blood, which I’m not really a fan of, but it’s few and far between.

Now, the three psychopaths; Moe (Liam W. Ashcroft), Curly (Stu Jopia), and Marcus Jones (Alexander Mounsey), are so much fun to watch!  Although, and I’ve tried, I couldn’t tell which one was which, my hearing ain’t too good these days, but either way, the nailed it. The most fun was the psychopath with the Candy Cane and his love for Christmas carols, and one brutal scene involving an eyeball and a Candy cane, you get the picture, right? Yeah, these guys totally made this work so well, as they played off each other and you could tell they were having so much fun just causing chaos!

Another bonus for me was the music. I thought it just played out so well, it was a little quirky at times as you wouldn’t really expect to hear some synth such as this, but it’s an absolute treat, extra points to Liam W. Ashcroft on that front. If you guys ever read this, I’d love to be able to add the score to my collection, as I’m sure many others would, too.

So, yeah, I had so much fun with this one, and at any moment I was just waiting for Rutger Hauer to come bursting in, delivering justice, one shell at a time! Just a heads up though, he never shows.

If you guys have been keeping your eye on this one, you’ll be pleased to know that XLrator Media will be unleashing the film this December 6th, so add this onto your Christmas wishlist right now!

Good Tidings


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