Thanks go out to Patti Paulie at iHorror who’s fantastic article in praise of the Jesus Bunny inspired me to write my own!
Know why you don’t see more Great Easter Horror Movies lists? Because there aren’t (m)any, that’s why. Easter-themed horror movies are an extreme niche, like stoner horror or puppet horror. Films of this ilk are almost exclusively B-grade, featuring killers in silly bunny suits, bad acting, and buckets of blood. There’s a place for this kind of entertainment, absolutely, but films like Beaster Day: Here Comes Pete CottonHell and Evil Bong will always be considered bargain-bin caliber at best.
As for scary bunnies, they exist, but the most notable examples to date are the animated rabbits in Watership Down and Frank (James Duval) from Donnie Dark. But almost exactly one year ago, a truly terrifying creature entered the pantheon of horror, one that’s both Easter-themed and lupine. What makes this character so exceptional, however, is that he’s truly terrifying. As far as Easter horror goes, he’s elite.
Related Article: “Easter Egg” Hunting for Horror Fans
Holidays is a horror anthology released on April 15, 2016. It contains nine segments, each featuring a different holiday and each produced by a different director. Significant holidays covered include the usual suspects: Father’s Day, Mother’s Day, New Year’s, St. Patrick’s Day, Halloween, Christmas, and (of course) Easter.
The Easter segment was directed by Nicholas McCarthy (The Pact, At the Devil’s Door)—and it’s truly fantastic. A pre-teen girl (Ava Acres) struggles to reconcile what she’s been told about Christ and the resurrection with the cartoonish festival of rabbits and chocolate eggs. It culminates in an ungodly manifestation, a hideous amalgamation of the most disturbing aspects of the separate mythologies: A Jesus Christ Bunny (Mark Steger).
The fiend tells her she must take his place in a chilling scene that’s nothing if not metaphors for the death of innocence and questioning the existence of God. It’s a nightmare where the veracity of religious fervor and the absurdity of ultra-literal interpretations reveal monstrous and Earth-shattering inconsistencies; a moment of realization that sends a child down the rabbit hole of adulthood.
Related Article: Video: Scaring the Hell out of Kids is a Czech Christmas Tradition!
If it were to be adapted into a feature film, I’d watch it in an instant!
Check out a clip from the Easter segment of Holidays below, followed by the trailer, synopsis, and poster for the entire film.
Official Synopsis: Nine filmmakers present horror stories that revolve around Valentine’s Day, Saint Patrick’s Day, Easter, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Halloween, Christmas and New Year’s Eve.
Do you think there are any truly great Easter-themed horror movies? What do you think of McCarthy’s Jesus Bunny from Holidays? Sound off in the Comments section!