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Bad Santa
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Reviews & Ratings for
Bad Santa More at IMDbPro »

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316 out of 413 people found the following review useful:

I cant believe some of the comments...

10/10
Author: mazingol
24 September 2004

I think this movie was great. It has hilarious humour and its almost an unique growth story of a man that has grown tired of his miserable life and finds something worth fighting for.

The thing that bothers me is that some people criticize the film cause it has too bad language. In my opinion the used language is important part of the film. I wouldn't find the characters very "authentic" if they wouldn't use the kind of language they do.

Maybe its part of modern trend. People are shocked if somebody swears or shows a breast in TV and after that they go see some idiotic TV series or action movie where they kill 1000 people and not even blink.

Is the message "violence is OK, but sex/nudity and swearing is not" somehow logical? I think in the real life its quite the opposite.

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128 out of 166 people found the following review useful:

The perfect Christmas antidote

10/10
Author: idiopath from United Kingdom
23 December 2004

Hilarious from start to finish, this movie covers the story of an alcoholic safe cracker who works as a shopping mall Santa to steal money from the mall on Christmas eve. The concept of the movie is simple and the script is razor sharp with well drawn characters enhanced by faultless performances throughout. As with all good comedies, the material is inspired but it's the delivery that makes it unforgettable. Thornton proves that when it comes to Dead-pan comedy, there's no one better! His performance alone would be enough to make this film good but the fact that his high standards are maintained by the rest of the cast elevates it to a classic.

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89 out of 118 people found the following review useful:

Crude,Rude and Surprisingly Touching

8/10
Author: trickydicky (trickydicky@unitz.ca) from Sudbury, Canada
8 January 2005

I avoided this flic when it first came out due to the reviews which concentrated on the 'cynicism'and 'edgyness' of the effort. It is crude.It is rude.And is is filled with enough 4-letter words to be its own zone of bad taste. Know what else? Billy Bob Thorton is masterful as is the rest of the cast.There are no 'heroes',but Billy Bob is not exactly an anti-hero either.He portrays a broken,dysfunctional loser who holds nothing in contempt so much as himself.Desiring nothing so much as extinction,he rambles through life hating EVERYTHING. But it's Christmas,and even for losers third,fourth,fifth,or 50th chances sometimes show up.Watching Billy Bob's character 'grow-up'during the film is surprisingly heartwarming.For a broken man,he does the best he can once he allows himself to 'give-a-damm'. See this for his performance(and the rest of the cast),and be surprised.

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95 out of 136 people found the following review useful:

Zwigoff

9/10
Author: marcosaguado from Los Angeles, USA
28 April 2005

Billy Bob Thornton has found his Josef Von Sternberg in Terry Zwigoff. As a revolting, immoral, insignificant Santa, Billy Bob is a wonder. His face is a moving, disturbing, hysterical reflection of his awareness. His life sucks. The cut from Miami to Billy Bob and his partner walking down the street in their Christmas costumes is, on its own, worth the price of admission. Terry Zwigoff has transformed the crumbs of society into a sophisticated, adult, art form. Billy Bob and his sensational young co star Brett Kelly create characters never seen before on the screen and as a consequence we cling on to their every nuance, incapable to predict what could happen next. That in itself makes Bad Santa a very welcome surprise and a great time at the movies.

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56 out of 73 people found the following review useful:

One of the best, and most surprising, films of the year

10/10
Author: (carmackdaddy@hotmail.com) from Arkansas, US
1 December 2003

When I first saw the trailer for this film I thought that it was basically just gonna be a funny little dark comedy that would be a nice distraction from the annoying family movies that are being dumped into theaters around this time. However, leaving the theater after watching this, I discovered how much more it was than what I was expecting. Instead a good movie, I got a great one, with good direction and a wonderful script and, best of all, the performance of Billy Bob Thornton, who makes the film what it is. His foulmouthed, cynical, suicidal character might look two-dimensional on paper and, had another actor taken a stab at this role, come off as forced and tiresome, but Thornton finds just the right blend of humor and reality. The film is touching, but not on the surface. Many viewers will not get it; they'll see this film as a vulgar assault on the Christmas spirit, and, in a way, it is, but deeper than that there is a story here about a man who has lost all faith in the human race and has now been restored. Without being sappy, unlike almost any other film I've ever seen, "Bad Santa" is able to make this an emotional journey for a contemptable character, get us to like him, and disguise it behind dark, sick humor. It's a masterpiece of dark comedy and the best holiday film of the last 5 years. **** out of ****

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70 out of 101 people found the following review useful:

It took two viewings to really get into it- and really laugh my head off

9/10
Author: MisterWhiplash from United States
18 January 2004

The first time I saw Terry Zwigoff's latest effort (co-executive produced by the Coen brothers) Bad Santa, I didn't know whether I was watching a comedy that had astonishingly funny and madcap moments, or if it was a really bad movie. At times the script felt like it was under the penmanship of demented cretins off loan of some low-rent porno company. But there were scenes and moments with good old Billy Bob Thornton that had me laughing uncontrollably, so I decided to see it again recently. Now I understand it- this is a dig-in nails, ribald, hardcore satirical look at one (un-kept is a term used loosely) man in the midst of Americana during Christmas time.

This man is Willie, played by Billy Bob, as something of a loser, low-self esteem, boozing, cursing, and a thief, though only at Christmas time. In a sense he's a modern day pirate without a shave, though with a yearly plan to rob a large store in a given mall he's given a job at with his co-patriot Marcus (Tony Cox, whom you may recall from uproarious bit parts in Friday and Me, Myself, and Irene). In one season, however, he meets a Kid (Brent Kelly), who for some reason looks up to this con-man in a red suit, giving him a place to stay in turn (never asked for) for some advice and help with bullies and self-esteem. On the first viewing of Bad Santa, along with not knowing whether I was seeing a good or bad film, I didn't know whether Billy Bob was pushing the 'rotten-dude' envelope over the top or just right. This may be a problem for most viewers going to see it once and not thinking of seeing it again.

But I think Bad Santa is one of those movies that merits a repeat viewing- you may laugh less or harder at certain jokes and moments of outrageousness, some may fly over your head completely or make you go "eww". Yet I think the brilliant aspect about Bad Santa is it never takes itself a bit too seriously. Even in the denouement, when we are sort of assured things will turn out alright; it's like a denouement on a South Park episode. In fact, that's something that can be said about Bad Santa, is that it feels like a work in the vein of Parker and Stone, but since it's from the director of Ghost World it comes off a little fresher, with an appeal all its own.

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53 out of 76 people found the following review useful:

Wonderfully Funny, Very Irreverrent Christmas Movie

8/10
Author: jiraf from Seattle, WA
28 December 2004

This is one of the best Christmas movie of all times. The casting is brilliant, and the chemistry between all the characters is very much present.

Billy Bob Thornton was especially funny as the loser in life who dons the red suit every Christmas. Just seeing Santa behaving drunken and swearing every other word tells you how different this is from the typical Christmas family friendly movies.

Bernie Mac was funny in his supporting role, and Tony Cox was OK. Billy Bob was phenomenal.

I've watched this movie twice already this Christmas season, and I loved every minute of it.

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56 out of 84 people found the following review useful:

One of the funniest movies for a long time

8/10
Author: Morgan Hua from Sunnyvale, CA
20 October 2004

I saw the trailers and knew what I was in for when I went to see Bad Santa. It's not Nice Santa or Naughty Santa, but BAAADD SANTA, horribly drunk and disorderly Santa. Rude and Crude Santa.

I laughed until tears streamed down my face.

There is a lot of sexual situations and profanity, but you have to look past it. Those sensitive to foul language should not watch this movie nor FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL. This is not a kiddie movie, but a movie made for adults.

Compared to ELF, SANTA CLAUSE, and a whole raft of other so-so Christmas related comedies, this is one of the best. Most holiday humor movies are always on the lightside with an eye to the children market during the holidays. This one ranks in there with A Christmas STORY and PLANES, TRAINS, AND AUTOMOBILES and THE GRINCH WHO STOLE Christmas (cartoon version).

BAD SANTA is Christmas at its darkest, full of profanity, bad people, and evil deeds. But at the heart of it is a small bit of caring by one Bad Santa.

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62 out of 101 people found the following review useful:

The Ultimate Inappropriate Christmas Movie

Author: RossWrock from United States
29 December 2004

Forget Jimmy Stewart and that claymation crap! If you like Christmas movies with more of an edge and lots of comedy however, "Bad Santa" might just be your new favorite holiday movie. In my mind, usurping "A Christmas Story" and "Scrooged" as the funniest holiday movie yet, Bad Santa (or BS as I like to call it) pulls no punches as it delivers a raunchy, yet funny, and yes, even a little bit of a touching film.

Billy Bob Thorton is a drinking, fornicating, defecating thief who freeloads for the whole year, only to work 25 days in December while robbing a mall of all it's holiday proceeds. His partner in crime is Tony Cox, Santa's little person helper who keeps him sober and lucid enough through the season to not royally screw things up.

I won't go into details, because frankly the plot needs work. But the acting is superb, the script hysterical, and the unbelievable jokes and inappropriate situations are just so entertaining you won't care about anything else.

Bernie Mac and Lauren Graham deliver polished supporting roles, as does John Ritter in his final film role before his death. The kid doesn't have many lines (and I want to slap him for the ones he does deliver), but just looking at him makes me laugh, so I can't complain there.

Basically, this is the ultimate inappropriate Christmas movie; one that makes you stand up and scream, "Holly s*!t I can't believe they did that!" This movie is just so blatantly wrong, the only other film I can compare it to is "South Park: The Movie." Just as South Park crosses every line of decency that previously existed, so does BS. A great movie because of it? Hell no. But a funny and entertaining one? Hell yes!

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26 out of 42 people found the following review useful:

Excellent casting

7/10
Author: George Parker from Orange County, CA USA
23 June 2004

He drinks and smokes and pukes and wets his pants and has sex in public places. He has a horrible attitude, a trash mouth, is mean to little kids, hates himself, and robs department stores. Ok, so he's not all bad, but he is without a doubt the worst department store Santa ever. There's not a lot of stretching required of Thornton to get into character in this flick which capitalizes on the grosser than gross sense of comedy/humor as it wends its way through a simple tale about a scamming Santa and his dwarf/elf sidekick who rip off a department store a year to avoid honest toil. A mildly creative love it or hate it flick which tries as hard to be disgusting as funny, "Bad Santa" has, for obvious reasons, received mixed reviews. Only for the thick skinned who aren't easily offended by bad language, bad attitudes, or bad, bad Santas. (B)

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