December is usually a time where snow is thought of fondly. I think that’s partly because it’s still a new phenomenon to the parts of the world where snow only falls in winter. So, we’re able to appreciate its stark, ethereal beauty. It’s also because December is the holiday season and there’s something magical about snow falling against the backdrop of the lights and decorations of the Yuletide season. For the rest of the year though snow is viewed less favorable because we’re reminded of just how dangerous and inhospitable winter environments can be.
So, when you add snow to a movie you can add a sense of danger, magic, and beauty. We think all of those elements work particularly well in horror, which is why we’ve compiled a list of 10 horror film franchises we want to see go out and play in the snow. We’ve also included our thoughts as to why snow or the Christmas season lends itself to the trappings of that particular franchise.
10.) Final Destination
Going outside during winter is dangerous! The season can kill you in so many different ways; slip and falls, hazardous roads, and even literally freezing to death. That’s why there needs to be a Final Destination film set deep in the heart of winter. There’s just so much opportunity for creative mayhem to be had there. Icy roads could lead to an insane car pile up that puts the one from the second film to shame! Falling icicles! Avalanches! Cracking lake ice! Death would have a grand time using all of those things and more to pick off the hapless victims of a Final Destination film, and I think audiences would have a ball watching all the carnage unfold.
Marvel Studios’ upcoming relaunch of the Blade franchise starring Mahershala Ali as the titular vampire slaying Daywalker could go in a lot of different directions. I for one hope it ventures out into the snow. Partly because of the fantastic visual opportunities. The blood spilled by vampires would look stunning in the snow and I think Blade trekking through the snow in his signature black, leather duster on a moonlit night would make for an incredible and iconic visual. Plus, snow means you could stage some phenomenal fight scenes. Imagine a kung fu fight on ice! Or a horde of Nosferatu exploding from out of a snow bank!
8.) Evil Dead
I’m a fan of both Ash Williams (Bruce Campbell), the protagonist of the original Evil Dead franchise, and Fede Alvarez’s 2013 remake, which featured a brand new protagonist named Mia (Jane Levy). So, I would love to see either character venture out in winter weather for a few reasons. The first is, regardless of which character you follow, a ton of blood is going to be spilled against the snow and it will look fabulous.
The other reasons are character specific. Ash’s exploits tend to be more humorous, which means you can allow the Deadites to run wild in Christmas themed locales. So, Imagine the fun that could be had in a demonically possessed Santa’s workshop! Or a mall at Christmas time! The Evil Dead remake established Mia’s story as more horrific. So, trapping her in a dark, snowy, demon haunted woods or a snowbound cabin surrounded by evil would be on brand and lead to some brutal and beautiful scenes.
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Hell is generally thought of as a fiery place, but in Inferno, the first part of his epic 14th century poem, The Divine Comedy, Dante Alighieri depicted the deepest and most foreboding part of the underworld as a place of ice. That area, known as “The Ninth Circle”, would be a great and natural place for a wintry installment of the Hellraiser franchise to begin or end. There would of course have to be some earth bound scenes as well. Partly because the Cenobites would look fantastic against a snowy backdrop. Having those demons walk the Earth during Christmas would make for a fascinating contrast too. Plus, the holiday season is often a time of great excess and decadence. So, it’s an organic setting for demonic invaders to come to Earth and “show some sights.”
6.) The Conjuring
The Conjuring films are the fictionalized adventures of real life demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren (Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga). In them, they’re generally thrust into a period piece style investigation of a renowned or folklore based haunting. So, it would make perfect sense that a future installment would bring them to my home state of Michigan during the winter of 1976. That winter saw a massive storm ravage lower Michigan that dropped five inches of ice in some places, and before the storm hit some electrical company workers reported seeing a dwarf like figure shambling up a telephone pole. Some people believed that dwarf to be the Nain Rouge; a squat, monstrous figure supposedly spotted at various points in Detroit history right before a massive misfortune befell the area. So it would be a movie that tests the Warren’s faith and mettle with a perilous setting and a possibly demonic foe rich in folklore.
A Scream film set in the snow would have so many fantastic visuals. There’s the blood in the snow I mentioned earlier, but the Ghostface costume would look stunning against a wintry backdrop. Plus, maybe we’d get a winter camoflague version with a white cloak! On top of that though, taking Scream into the snow would allow the meta franchise to tackle a common slasher film trope; the fact that a killer’s intended victims rarely run outside of the house they’re being stalked in.
What if the weather was so bad that running outside meant the painful agony of freezing to death? Or getting lost in the whiteout of a blizzard? Icy roads also means escape by car is a dangerous options because if you wreck or slide off the road into a snowbank you’re stranded in dangerous weather with a killer. So, snow would make a Scream film look great and add a terrifying complication to the slasher formula.
4.) Texas Chainsaw Massacre
It may not seem like it, but there are places where it snows in Texas, especially near the mountains. That’s a good thing too because it allows horror’s most famous anthropophagist franchise to take a different and perhaps more terrifying look at cannibalism. Because real world incidents of cannibalism like the Donner party of the Uruguayan Rugby team (whose story was chronicled in the 1993 movie Alive) often involve average people trapped in a snowy environment with no food who are forced to eat the dead to survive.
So, what happens when you strand normal people in a blizzard with no food and a branch of Texas Chainsaw Massacre’s cannibalistic Sawyer family? And what if the only way to survive the assault of a harsh winter and the Sawyers was to become them?
The most recent Hellboy film was not well received by critics or fans, but the character deserves another cinematic outing and the Christmas season is the perfect setting for it. Partly because the season allows for some very cool visuals. There’s the fact that Hellboy’s red skin is one of Christmas’ primary colors, and the character would look fantastic against the snow or holiday lights. The idea of heroic demon during the Christmas holidays is also thematically rich. Plus, there’s a whole host of folklore based monsters for him to fight. This Metal Injection article lists off a few of the more interesting ones.
Also, as Guillermo del Toro proved I think Hellboy films work best when they’re sort of the singular vision of a writer/director. So, it would be great to see a Christmas themed Hellboy film from del Toro, but if he’s unavailable there’s another writer/director that could be tapped and he could bring with him his take on the Christmas season’s most infamous monster. Yes, I’m taking about a film written and directed by Michael Dougherty that would pit Hellboy against the titular monster of his 2015 holiday horror film Krampus!
2.) The Guest
Dan Stevens, the star of the 2014 film The Guest, has said that he and the film’s director Adam Wingard and writer Simon Barrett have talked about working together again, which has left many fans hoping their next collaboration is a sequel to The Guest. If they decide to do a sequel Christmas would be a perfect setting.
The original film used its Halloween setting to give it a unique visual identity. That could continue with Christmas. Holiday lights cast shadows and light scenes in stunning ways. And as we talked about in our other entries, snow allows you to stage action and carnage in some pretty impressive ways. Plus, Christmas is a time for families. So it would make perfect sense both thematically and plot wise that Stevens’ unhinged super soldier, David Collins, would try to find a new family to connect with at Christmas time.
1.) Friday the 13th
Our number one entry on this list is one the fans have wanted for a long time; for Friday the 13th’s Jason Voorhees (who is already dressed for winter sports with his signature hockey mask) to come have some murderous fun in the snow. My previous entries illustrated that there’s so much cool stuff that could be done with a snowbound Friday the 13th film; great visuals, an added survival horror element, and a wilderness setting that would become infinitely more creepy.
Womp Stomp films have already shown how cool a winter set Friday the 13th film could be with their 30 minute short, Never Hike In the Snow: A Friday the 13th Fan Film. They did all of that with a crowd funded budget too! So, watching it made me even more excited for the potential of a full length wintry, Friday the 13th movie developed with the resources of a major studio.
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