10+ Christmas Movies That Were Actually Pretty Dark

We here at Diply would like to remind you that a Christmas movie is anything that takes place over Christmas, and doesn't necessarily have to be about Christmas.

So no comments to the contrary, please.

'Batman Returns'


Yes, this is a Christmas movie because it takes place over Christmas... and it's super dark.

The Penguin's design is terrifying, Catwoman's back story is much of the same... and it's all juxtaposed with this light and fluffy holiday!

'Die Hard'


This has been under the "is it a Christmas movie" debate for years, but it takes place during Christmas so we're counting it.

And any Christmas movie with a body count can be considered dark.



The one scene that pops out in my mind in terms of this movie being dark is when Bill Murray suggest they staple some antlers to a mouse's head... a live mouse!

'It's A Wonderful Life'


It may seem innocent on the outside, sure.

But at its core, it's a story about a man who loses all of his money and is driven to the point of suicide.

'Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale'


This movie has a version of Santa that's less holly and jolly, and more like a blood craving creature from the depths of the earth and time.

It's pretty dark and scary.

'The Nightmare Before Christmas'


As much as this movie is fun and filled with songs, there are a lot of moments that you'd see in a horror movie, rather than a Christmas movie for kids.



This is one of the scariest non-scary movies that takes place over Christmas... everything from the Gremlin's design to the crazy, murderous things they do just screams dark.

And it's Christmas fun all the way!

'Black Christmas'


This Christmas story is about a bunch of sorority girls that have a killer living in their attic.

Not the usual Christmas fair in the least bit, it's a slasher with lots of blood and gore.

'Lethal Weapon'

This action movie starts off with Mel Gibson going nuts in a Christmas tree lot, so we can assume it takes place during Christmas.

Even though there's no snow...that's L.A. for you.



This 2015 horror-comedy was, of course, going to be a little bit dark, it was about the evil version of Santa Claus!

Oh, and it was a horror set on Christmas.

'In Bruges'


This story about two assassins is as dark as a movie about two assassins could be: it has hookers, it has drugs and of course, it has murder.

Oh, and Christmas!

'The Ice Harvest'


This generally unknown picture about gangsters embezzling 2 million dollars is one with a decent body count... and it also takes place during Christmas!

The perfect combo for any dark Christmas movie.

'Bad Santa'


Of course, a movie where a guy who does a mall Santa gig gets drunk, curses profusely, has sex and eventually robs the mall he's working at would be considered dark.

'Eyes Wide Shut'


This sexually charged and often confusing Stanley Kubrick movie actually takes place during Christmas... or at least it starts at a Christmas party.

You were probably too distracted by the orgies to notice.