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Thursday, December 16, 2021

10 Holiday Horror Treats to Stream This Month on Netflix and Prime Video

‘Tis the season to watch holiday-themed horror, and we’re here to make that even easier for you. We’re breaking down the best holiday horror selections across the many streaming apps available to us, and this round, we’re highlighting Netflix and Prime Video‘s seasonal treats.

Neither Netflix nor Prime Video decked the halls this December, at least not when it comes to holiday-themed horror. Still, we found some highlights worth streaming anyway. From intense chills to family-friendly thrills, here’s what to stream this month.

On Netflix:


This short, six-episode binge-watch is the equivalent of a Marvel movie in terms of length. It sees a family journey to a remote island for their Christmas holiday, at which point they immediately break all the rules and run afoul of the locals. When the teen daughter steals and befriends an injured baby elf, it causes a power shift that puts everyone’s lives in danger. An easy, breezy holiday horror watch that favors dark fairy tale origins.

Await Further Instructions

The Milgram family has gathered together for Christmas dinner celebrations only to find themselves trapped within their home by a mysterious black substance right outside. The TV transmits a single-line message, “Await further instructions.” Paranoia turns their night of holiday cheer into a dinner party full of carnage. If you’re in the mood for grim, sci-fi-fueled holiday horror, this is for you.

Let Me In

Before the release of Matt Reeves’ upcoming The Batman, check out his remake of Let the Right One In. It’s a faithful adaptation of the source material, and the cast is stellar. Kodi Smit-McPhee stars as Owen, a shy, bullied boy who unwittingly befriends a vampire, Abby (Chloe Moretz). The ever amiable Richard Jenkins plays her companion. Sure, it may not be a conventional Christmas movie, but its winter setting and themes of a found family feel appropriate for the season nonetheless.

Alien Xmas

Alien Xmas isn’t horror, but it is created by the Chiodo Brothers (Killer Klowns from Outer Space), so we’re considering it a family-friendly offering that overlaps with our favorite genre. Directed by Stephen Chiodo, the stop-motion animated special follows a little alien named X as he tries to save the world from extraterrestrials out to steal Earth’s gravity. It’s also a brisk 40-minutes long.

The Conjuring 2

Ed and Lorraine Warren travel to North London to help a struggling family deal with one terrifying haunting. James Wan’s sequel dials up the terror and introduces a few memorable ghosts. That includes the scene-stealing demonic nun, Valak. As if that’s not enough, it so happens to be the holiday season. Ed and Lorraine may be busy fighting evil here, but they make time to spread some holiday cheer, too.

On Prime Video:

Dead End

Ray Wise and Lin Shaye lead in this road trip horror movie set on Christmas Eve. When Ray Wise’s Frank opts to take the scenic route on the long drive over to Frank’s in-laws, things go awry quickly. But never quite how you’d expect. Essentially a chamber piece, mostly set within the confines of the car, Dead End is an intelligent horror film with a great cast and unpredictable twists. There’s plenty of humor to help alleviate the tension, too.

The Children

Children have a penchant for creepiness in horror, and The Children ranks high among the killer kid subgenre. An isolated family and friend gathering over Christmas winds up pitting children against parents when a gruesome virus breaks out. If you think the holiday setting means tamer kills, you’d be wrong; these children are malicious little killers.

Santa Jaws

If you’ve spiked your eggnog a little too hard and need something irreverent and silly, this is for you. It features a killer shark sporting a Santa hat on the loose, killing its way through a naughty list. That’s the only thing you need to know to determine whether this absurd horror-comedy is for you or not.

Better Watch Out

This title is for those that like their holiday horror full of pitch-black humor and one nasty mean streak. A babysitting job in the quiet suburbs turns into a harrowing night for the babysitter when her ward’s house is under siege by intruders. There’s far more than meets the eye in this twist on home-invasion horror, and it’s vicious. A bone-chilling villain and one brutal kill that riffs on a family holiday favorite make this a memorable and crowd-pleasing pick.


This horror thriller will make you think twice about devoting too much of your life to work. Rachel Nichols’s Angela is a corporate workaholic, the last to leave the office on Christmas Eve. That makes it the perfect time for a psychopath to hold her hostage in the parking garage—this one’s intense, effective, and pretty savage. P2 is available on IMDb TV through Prime Video.


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