Get ready for a dose of holiday fear and action with this indie horror comedy from the mind of Spooky Dan Walker!
Sadie and Dahlia are cosplay fanatics who have their own viral channel calling themselves The Adventure Girls. They go into long abandoned places to have fun and possibly search for “treasures”. On Christmas Eve, they decide to bring in their friend Alexi for the ride as their latest adventure takes them to Santa Land, a Christmas-themed amusement park that has been shut down for twenty years. En route, they stop at a local bar where they learn that a series of murders have recently popped up. Despite the warnings, the trio head to Santa Land.
Upon their arrival, everything starts out fine. That is, until the trio feels like they are being watched. As if that’s not bad enough, the encounter the Devil of Christmas, the deadly Krampus. Fortunately for them, they find a reliable ally in the Jolly Big Man himself, Santa Claus. At first, they don’t believe that Santa is real, but when he proves himself, the trio and Santa, along with local officer Sean, decide to go into battle and put an end to the Krampus and save the spirit of Christmas once and for all.
We’ve all seen Santa Claus as both the jolly big man and as a maniacal killer. We’ve seen the Krampus in all its glory. This is a fun horror-comedy that answers the question, what if Santa and the Krampus go to blows with Santa getting some unexpected help? Co-writer and director “Spooky” Dan Walker has crafted a film that is nothing run of the mill, but a nice meshing of comedy and scares with a dash of action.
In the roles of the titular “Slay Belles” are Kristina Klebe, Susan Slaughter, and Hannah Wagner. The trio of actress fit their roles to a tee. Klebe’s Alexi is the grounded member of the group, the one along for the ride. Slaughter’s Dahlia is the tough girl of the group while Wagner’s Sadie is the cheerful who defines cosplay with her scene of changing wigs. The attitudes of this trio will bring to mind Cartoon Network’s iconic Powerpuff Girls, with Alexi being Blossom, Dahlia as Buttercup, and Sadie as Bubbles. Funny thought yes, but totally true.
Barry Bostwick is having fun with his role of Santa. At first appearing as a biker-type, it is when he finally unleashes his “magic” to prove who he is that he goes in full Santa costume with biker bandana and cane, ready for a fight. Add to the mix Kamen Rider: Dragon Knight lead star Stephen Ford as Sean, a local officer who does more work on the force than his fellow officers, who look baffled for the most part when it comes to the series of murders. Richard Moll makes the most of his cameo as a fellow officer while Pee Wee’s Big Adventure co-star Diane Salinger rocks it as Cherry, the owner of the local bar who has a hatred for Christmas.
There are both some great frightening moments when we see the murders from the point-of-view from the Krampus, played by Joel Hebner in a very nice costume by Vincent Guastini. Hebner also plays one of the baffled officers. There is a fun moment when the girls temporarily knock out the Krampus, which leads to a hilarious attempt to get more views for their viral channel by taking photos with him. This is just a piece of the fun and holiday fear that is Slay Belles.
Slay Belles is a fun horror comedy that brings the Christmas spirits together in a knock out drag-In fight with the titular trio that could bring the spirits of the Powerpuff Girls with their attitudes. This is one holiday “fear-fest” worth checking out.
WFG RATING: B+
Dread Central Presents and Bad Juju Productions presents a Spookshow Entertainment production. Director: Spooky Dan Walker. Producers: Jessica Lurhssen and Esther Goodstein. Writers: Jessica Luhrssen and Spooky Dan Walker. Cinematography: Graham Robbins. Editing: Spooky Dan Walker
Cast: Barry Bostwick, Kristina Klebe, Susan Slaughter, Hannah Wagner, Stephen Ford, Joel Hebner, Richard Moll, Diane Salinger, Rich Manley, Blake Reigle, Matt Eskew.