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Film / Holidays

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Holidays is a 2016 horror anthology film. Each short is titled for and focuses upon an individual major holiday. The subjects in order of viewing are:

  • Valentine's Day (Directed by Kevin Kolsch & Nicholas Widmyer): A troubled teen uses her unrequited love for her swimming coach to cope with the constant bullying of her classmates.
  • St. Patrick's Day (Directed by Gary Shore): In Ireland, a school teacher's attempts to reach a withdrawn student are interrupted by an unexpected pregnancy.
  • Easter (Directed by Nicholas McCarthy): On Easter's Eve a mother attempts to explain Jesus and the Easter Bunny to her imaginative daughter who keeps comically missing the point.
  • Mother's Day (Directed by Sarah Adina Smith): A California woman seemingly cursed with unwanted pregnancies reaches out in desperation to a New Age women's group.
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  • Father's Day (Directed by Anthony Scott Burns): The appearance of a cryptic cassette tape sends a young woman on a frantic quest for her father who has been missing and presumed dead.
  • Halloween (Directed by Kevin Smith): A trio of porn actresses are pushed to the limit by their abusive landlord/pimp.
  • Christmas (Directed by Scott Stewart): A Henpecked Husband (Seth Green) must resort to drastic measures to acquire the Christmas season's hot toy for his son.
  • New Year's Eve (directed by Adam Egypt Mortimer): After ending a long-term relationship, a man searches to find love again in time for New Year's Eve.



  • Adults Are Useless: Coach Rockwell of Valentine's Day does barely anything to stem his students' brutal taunting of their weakest member, Maxine. It shows how bad her situation truly is, that his mild displays of compassion toward her can blossom into such an intense fixation on her part. Sort of justified given that the coach is preoccupied with some pretty serious medical and marital problems of his own.
  • Affably Evil: The fertility cult in Mother's Day. They genuinely believe they're doing the right thing for Kate and the doctor in particular seems to actually care, despite the fact that what they're doing is immoral, illegal, very likely fatal, and might have dire supernatural consequences for the rest of the world.
  • Agony of the Feet: Reggie gets his foot lopped off with an axe in New Year's Eve.
  • All of the Other Reindeer: In Valentine's Day Maxine is cruelly teased by all of the other girls, who call her "Maxi Pad". Their leader Heidi even mocks her dad's suicide.
  • Alpha Bitch: Heidi from Valentine's Day ruthlessly and viciously mocks Maxine. It's even completed by their contrasting looks, with Heidi being a blonde athlete and Maxine an Eerie Pale-Skinned Brunette. As usual, Heidi gets a more attractive look, with Maxine in frumpy clothes. She's also leader of a Girl Posse.
  • An Axe to Grind: Reggie's date in New Year's Eve, who is appropriately Ax-Crazy.
  • Ancient Conspiracy: Given the temple, the people mentioned at different points on the tape by Carol's father, and the massive timetable on which things seem to operate, it's clear that the antagonist of Father's Day isn't acting alone.
  • And Show It to You: In Valentine's Day, Maxine cuts Alpha Bitch Heidi's heart out while she is still alive, before presenting it to Coach.
  • Asshole Victim:
    • Heidi of Valentine's Day is a cruel Alpha Bitch who mocks Maxine ruthlessly. She gets murdered by Maxine.
    • Reggie of New Year's Eve is a Serial Killer who gets killed by another Serial Killer.
    • Ian of Halloween is an abusive pimp. His girls kill him.
    • Honorable mention goes to the Business Man from the Christmas segment. The Business Man is a callous asshole, while Pete abandons him to die.
  • Bait-and-Switch: In Halloween Holly's remarks continually lead up to supernatural horror involving witches. But no, it's just perfectly mundane Torture Porn.
  • Bilingual Bonus: Jean speaks unsubtitled and untranslated Spanish to Reggie in "New Year's Eve".
    Jean: Feliz Año Nuevo, cariño
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Invoked by Pete of Christmas, who defends his actions by saying he was "tired of being nice."
  • Beware the Quiet Ones: Maxine of Valentine's Day isn't much for talking but her actions speak loud enough.
  • Billy Needs an Organ: Coach Rockwell in Valentine's Day needs a heart transplant, with his students putting together a fundraiser for him. Maxine decides to take matters into her own hands by killing Heidi and cutting her heart out to give to the Coach as a gift.
  • Blessed with Suck: In Mother's Day, as the women all around Kate are resorting to bizarre measures in order to get pregnant, she could get pregnant whenever she wanted to. Trouble is, she never wants to.
  • Body Horror: The Easter Bunny/Jesus has a pair of holes in his hands from which chicks emerge. And the little girl's taking his place heavily implies this.
  • The Bully: Heidi is constantly mocking Maxine, and shoves her into the pool off the diving board when she hesitates over jumping. She even stoops to mocking Maxine's dad's suicide.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Heidi of Valentine's Day thinks it's a good idea to keep heckling the silent, disturbing kid who is always armed with the boxcutter her father killed himself with! Even when Maxine is giving off plenty of overt warning signs that she is going to snap and make Heidi pay, Heidi still doesn't get it.
  • Chekhov's Gun: In New Year's Eve, Reggie's gun misfires when he first tries to kill his girlfriend, and he has to pull the trigger a couple times before it fires. Later, when he is fighting his Axe-Crazy date, he grabs his gun from his coat, points it at her, and pulls the trigger, only for it to misfire. Before he can fire again, she buries an axe in his skull.
  • Cosmic Horror: The events of Father's Day are dictated by a total solar eclipse, heavily implying this.
  • Constantly Curious: While being tucked in at night, the little girl in Easter continuously asks her mom questions about Easter, to which the latter responds by telling her to get some sleep.
  • Creepy Child: Grainne of St. Patrick's Day. Given who her relatives seem to be and the fact that she doesn't seem to age or grow despite well over a year passing, it's entirely possible that she's not human, or at least not fully so.
  • Dark Messiah: The religion in Father's Day seems to follow one of these, as indicated by the awed, reverent tones with which Carol's father speaks of his once-in-a-lifetime chance to meet "him" and the fact that he abandoned his family in order to do so.
  • A Date with Rosie Palms: Easter heavily implies that the mother masturbates before going to sleep.
  • Death Glare: In Valentine's Day Maxine gives Heidi one for mocking her dad killing himself. Heidi looks quite disturbed after seeing it.
  • Disappeared Dad:
    • In Valentine's Day Maxine's father killed himself before the film's events.
    • The girl in Easter asks her mom if her dad will ever come back. It's not said where he went.
    • This is the theme of Father's Day, with Carol getting a package from her father, revealing that he's still alive and following the instructions he left on a tape to meet up with him again.
  • Disproportionate Retribution:
    • Maxine kills Heidi by cutting out her heart for being a bully.
    • In "Christmas" Pete discovers his wife tortured and murdered her boss for not giving her a raise she wanted.
  • Evil Redhead: Grainne of St. Patrick's Day is a Creepy Child who's in a sinister pagan cult which impregnates Liz without consent. Liz begins to qualify as well as she acts more and more deranged as her pregnancy progresses.
  • Face-Revealing Turn: From Father's Day.Yeah, Carol. That's not your father.
  • Fan Disservice: In Christmas, Pete uses the VR machine to enjoy a blowjob from a beautiful porn actress, which then promptly gets switched to footage of the machine's original owner dying as Pete steals the machine and leaves him for dead.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Reggie and Jean of New Year's Eve, which might be why their profiles matched so well.
  • Foot Focus: When Heidi prepares to leave the locker room in Valentine's Day there's a shot of her slipping her bare feet into flip flops. Actually a Chekhov's Gun for when we later see her flip flop go flying off in the mud, causing her to fall and ultimately dooming her.
  • Gainax Ending: Mother's Day and Father's Day each have one. Then there's the ending of St. Patrick's Day that just has to be seen to be believed.
  • Girl Posse: Heidi in Valentine's Day has a gaggle of followers who never initiate the teasing of Maxine, but always join in once Heidi starts.
  • Gory Discretion Shot:
    • Valentine's Day doesn't show Maxine cutting Heidi's heart out.
    • In Halloween when Ian is forced to cut off his penis, it cuts to one of his former victims cutting open a Hot Pocket.
  • Groin Attack: The women in Halloween coerce their abusive pimp Ian to emasculate himself.
  • Henpecked Husband: Pete in Christmas, whose wife badgers him about getting a specific Christmas gift for their son, then snaps at him about overspending when he comes home with it.
  • Hooker with a Heart of Gold: All of the cam girls shown in Halloween are nice to other people, except their abusive pimp Ian, whom they get bloody revenge on.
  • Horror Doesn't Settle for Simple Tuesday: The theme of the entire anthology of course, but especially prevalent in Father's Day whose events happen in relation to a solar eclipse.
  • Humanoid Abomination: The Girl in Easter doesn't understand the relationship between Jesus and the Easter Bunny. It's worse than she can imagine.
  • Jerkass: Ian in Halloween is a gigantic dick to the camgirls he employs.
  • Karmic Rape: Halloween has Ian, a pimp who abuses the women he employs, get a vibrator up the ass that then gets superglued in, with them shocking him using a car battery. Earlier he'd sought to rape one, and by his attitude was implied to have raped them all in the past. It's shown as part of their revenge.
  • Longest Pregnancy Ever: The scene where Liz gives birth in "St. Patrick's Day" is marked "Day 396". Justified by the fact that supernatural forces are involved here.
  • Malevolent Masked Men: The cult in St. Patrick's Day all wear creepy animal head masks.
  • Mayincatec: Clues throughout Mother's Day indicate that the pagan gods of Central America are involved.
  • Mistreatment-Induced Betrayal: The camgirls in Halloween become fed up with Ian's treatment of them and get revenge on him.
  • Mood Whiplash: St. Patrick's Day gets very dark very quickly and all signs point toward a Body Horror finale. How it actually ends is quite lighthearted, but no less disturbing.
  • Murder by Inaction: Pete lets the Businessman die from a heart attack and takes away the VR gadget instead of calling for help.
  • Mystical Pregnancy: Liz gets inexplicably pregnant after a normal one night stand... however, it was with a snake. Apparently this is the work of a pagan cult.
  • Nightmare Fetishist: In Christmas, Pete's confession to Sarah gets her sexually excited for him for the first time in a while. The Reveal that she killed her boss as revenge for not giving her a promotion means she's not exactly "good" either.
  • Nothing Is Scarier: We never see what happens after Carol meets "him", or what happened to her father when he met "him" in Father's Day.
  • Oh, Crap!: In Valentine's Day Heidi realizes she went too far after mocking Maxine's dad killing himself, and the latter gives her a Death Glare. Heidi is far more right than she knows...
  • Pet the Dog: In Valentine's Day Maxine, who is bullied and teased by the other students, gets a Valentine from her coach when no one else gives her any (which only fuels her crush). Unfortunately, she decides to do something horrible for him in return...
  • Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: Ian attempts it in Halloween and gets some particularly sadistic punishment in return.
  • Religious Horror: Easter is blasphemous from start to end, but reaches its peak when the Doubting Thomas story from the Bible is reenacted, except in this case, "Thomas" is a little girl and "Jesus" is a crucified human/rabbit hybrid.
  • Reptiles Are Abhorrent: Subverted in St. Patrick's Day. Liz is so desperate for a child she carries what she knows to be a giant snake to term, against the advice of her doctor and family, and is absolutely overjoyed when she meets it later.
  • Schmuck Bait:
    • Had Carol in Father's Day been able to think rationally about it, she would have known that a decades-old tape with specific instructions telling her what to do in the future that was delivered by mysterious unseen agents couldn't possibly lead her anywhere good.
    • In Christmas the VR machine lures Pete with pornography, then starts tormenting him with the evil act he committed.
  • Sadist: Heidi of Valentine's Day has no qualms in torturing and bullying Max for her own amusement, even if it means hurting her.
  • Serial Killer: Reggie in New Year's Eve murders women who he dates. Then he dates another women who turns out to also be one, and murders him.
  • Serial-Killer Killer: Jean of New Year's Eve unknowingly becomes one, as her date Reggie is a Serial Killer, whom she kills (as a serial killer herself).
  • Shout-Out:
  • Sliding Scale of Comedy and Horror: The shorts, somewhat unusually for an anthology, are pretty varied in their placement on the scale. Halloween is entirely comedy; St. Patrick's Day is largely comedic, but with a pronounced horror undertone; Christmas and New Year's Eve are a largely even balance of horror and Black Comedy; Valentine's Day and Easter are chiefly horror, but arguably have some slightly light elements to them; Mother's Day and Father's Day are straight horror.
  • Stalker with a Crush: In Valentine's Day, appropriately enough. Maxine has a thing for her coach. Once he gives her a Valentine, she decides to reward him with Alpha Bitch Heidi's heart, since he needed a transplant.
  • Surreal Horror:
    • St Patrick's Day, arguably, though that's more Surreal Humor, with a woman giving birth to a snake.
    • Father's Day has some strong elements of this. A woman is led by a tape her father left to her into a very strange place where she thinks she'll meet him again, while instead encountering... something bad.
  • Teacher/Student Romance: Teenage Maxine is attracted to her forty-something teacher. When he gives her a Valentine for consolation over her bullying, she goes off the deep end to give him a gift in return.
  • Teens Are Monsters: The crux of Valentine's Day. Maxine is cruelly, constantly bullied and teased by other students, with their leader Heidi even mocking her dad's suicide.
  • Terms of Endangerment: Jean calls Reggie "cariño" (Spanish for "darling" or "sweetheart") after putting an axe through his head.
  • Torture Porn:
    • Halloween has three cam girls who were abused by their pimp Ian making him emasculate himself (offscreen, thankfully).
    • The brief shot in Christmas of Sarah sawing away at her boss Ed with an electric knife also counts.
  • Uncertain Doom: It's unclear what Carol's fate in Father's Day is. She most probably was killed, but nothing is seen exactly.
  • The Unsmile: In St. Patrick's Day, when Liz tells her student Grainne she should smile more, the girl starts giving her creepy, fixed grins.
  • Workout Fanservice: In Valentine's Day Maxine and the other girls have an extended sequence in their swim suits as they train, with all of them being attractive young women.

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