Violent Night is a 2022 American Christmas action comedy film starring David Harbour as Santa Claus, who fights mercenaries who have taken a wealthy family hostage in their home. It is directed by Tommy Wirkola, written by Pat Casey and Josh Miller, and also starring John Leguizamo, Alex Hassell, Alexis Louder, Edi Patterson, Cam Gigandet, Leah Brady, and Beverly D’Angelo.
Violent Night is basically a rip-off of Die Hard’s premise but with an excellent twist – the fly in the ointment is actually Santa Claus! For real!! Which is utterly absurd of course but a rather unique premise, we must admit. David (Stranger Things, Black Widow) Harbour is perfectly cast as Santa, translated to an all-action cuddly man, with just about enough “Christmas magic” to survive the challenge of taking down mercenaries!
The rest of the story is just a set up for this unlikely face-off. What’s at stake is more than the $300 million that the mercenaries attacked the Lightstone residence for – it is the soul of Christmas that is being fought for. This is represented by little seven-year-old Trudy Lightstone’s dogged belief in Santa Claus and what he is supposed to represent.
Considering that Violent Night is produced by the same folks behind John Wick and Nobody, the violent action sequences are thoroughly as over-the-top and gory as those aforementioned movies but with a comedic edge. Of course, as an action comedy, there’s much leeway to be given in terms of the suspension of disbelief but the movie manages that particular aspect quite well.
In the final analysis, Violent Night is simply good fun for an enjoyable Christmas viewing with a sentimental message appropriate for the time of the year. Sure, that can be corny but really what movie-goers should enjoy is the ultra-violence and fuck the Christmas spirit! Enjoy!!
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