Bad Santa (2003)


Comedy | Crime


Terry Zwigoff




Billy Bob Thornton, Tony Cox, Lauren Graham, Brett Kelly, Lauren Tom, John Ritter, Bernie Mac, Octavia Spencer, Cloris Leachman, Alex Borstein, Billy Gardell, Bryan Callen, Tom McGowan, Ajay Naidu, Ethan Phillips, Matt Walsh, Max Van Ville, Ryan Pinkston, Curtis Taylor


Santa (Billy Bob Thornton) and his Little Helper (Tony Cox) are two conman that rob department stores on Christmas Eves. It's only when Sana befriends a troubled kid (Brett Kelly) that they run into problems.


Let's be honest, we all are sick and tired of those Christmas family films where everyone is happy, bad guys turn good and basically everyone is just enjoying Christmas. Well, at least I am. Call me the Grinch, but I don't like Christmas.

If you are a partner in crime of mine then "Bad Santa" is the perfect film for you. It is a dark comedy hilarious from start to finish, a very inappropriate Christmas movie and also manages to be slightly touching.

The film's plot isn't anything special. Actually, if anything, it isn't even that good and needs a lot of work, but somehow Terry Zwigoff makes it work bringing to the screen this very fun story about a dark side of Christmas, that not only assaults the Christmas spirit, but also tells the story of a man who has lost all faith in humanity and how that will be restored. And he does that without being over sentimental.

The film doesn't care much for the characters either. The main character, Santa, indeed is a one-dimensional, quite stereotypical cynical and suicidal character. And the others aren't any better. However, the cast makes those cardboard characters work, starting from Billy Bob Thornton who gives an extremely funny performance as the alcoholic Santa - he even received a Golden Globe nomination for the role. The film also benefits of Tony Cox, John Ritter and Bernie Mac.

At last but not least, the humour. It is tremendously vulgar, dark and sick, so it's definitely not for everyone, but if you like this wicked sense of humour, you'll really enjoy this dark comedy for grown ups. 


  1. I am a Christmas nut! I love Its A Wonderful Life, Going My Way, White Christmas etc... I make my own Advent wreath that is hung from the ceiling( very German) and listen to beautiful Christmas music...listening to A German Christmas album right now but I love Bad Santa! It is all you said but it is just so damm funny that I laugh every time I see it. I think it was John Ritter's last film and he and Billy Bob were great friends. The outtakes at the end are priceless.

    1. I love German songs, sounds crazy but I love how the language sounds. I'd love to listen to some German Christmas music right now.

  2. Ero partito con pregiudizio, alla fine mi è piaciuto. E' un piccolo cult del genere "bad Christmas" :)