Bad Santa Image
Metascore
70

Generally favorable reviews - based on 38 Critics What's this?

User Score
7.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 137 Ratings

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  • Starring: , , ,
  • Summary: The story of two criminals who disguise themselves as Santa Claus and his elf, traveling across the country to malls and taking advantage of the good will people have towards Santa to rob the stores blind.
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 38
  2. Negative: 4 out of 38
  1. 90
    But Bad Santa does feature one last turn from the late John Ritter as a twittery department-store manager (his name, Mr. Chipeska, is a stroke of brilliance that I still can't quite put my finger on).
  2. Suddenly, you're looking at life in his (Thornton's) jaundiced way and laughing with a sense of vicarious liberation, even when he says the most outrageous things -- to children, no less. And I daresay you can still recover your holiday spirit when you're through laughing.
  3. Reviewed by: Mike Clark
    88
    This is a filmmaker who instinctively knows that a shot of Santa sitting at a bar as Ricky Nelson sings Jingle Bells will be no-frills funny.
  4. An unrepentantly rude, anti-seasonal dish of malice and mischief. Director Terry Zwigoff works from a story that originated with the Coen brothers and passed through at least four writers, including him...The results may leave you aghast or breathless with laughter, but you won't be neutral.
  5. 75
    If you've had it with all that feel-good holiday sludge, hook up with the combustibly nasty Bad Santa. It could become a Christmas perennial for Scrooges of all ages.
  6. I wanted to believe in Bad Santa. At least half of the time I did.
  7. If you're addicted to Billy Bob Thornton's slovenly charm, and thrill to the prospect of watching him talk endlessly about his bodily functions and penchant for anal sex with obese women, this is your movie. If not, it's like 90 minutes in hell.

See all 38 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 61 out of 77
  2. Negative: 13 out of 77
  1. Feb 20, 2014
    10
    Easily one of the best comedies ever made. It's not just the hilarious script and premise that make it stand out, but it has a lot of heart too. For me it's a feel good film and every time I watch it I come away slightly choked up, in a good way. Amazing performances all around, just pure perfection really. I wish Zwigoff would hurry up and make a new film. Expand
  2. Dec 14, 2012
    10
    Dark but hilarious. Billy Bob at his finest. And please don't even get me started on Thurman Murman! They are one of my favorite comedy duos of the century. Expand
  3. May 11, 2011
    8
    Ah classic! Just the movie I need when the super crazy commercial nature of Chrismas starts driving me up a wall. When I just can't stand to year an 800 horrifyingly awful version of Frosty the snowman, this is where I turn for relief. Hysterical, and yet meaningful cause in the end it points out how Christmas should be rather than how it is often treated. Expand
  4. Nov 19, 2011
    8
    While it may not be interesting to some people, Bad Santa is a funny comedy that will keep you laughing from start to finish. It can be rather vulger at times but hey, Its still hilarious. Expand
  5. Jul 10, 2014
    8
    This film had me spitting out my drink. The timing of the actors was so on cue I'm amazed this movie gets so few awards. Billy Bob Thornton and Tony Cox are both the funniest and ridiculous duo that I can name off the top of my head. The kid and the bartender had me in stitches. Bernie Mac and John Ritter also gave funny performances. So sad to see them both go, so young. 'Bad Santa' maybe too vulgar for some, but dark comedies are an art form; to take a serious topic, and generate laughs from it takes skill and quality. It shows itself here, if you can get past the language and hedonism. Expand
  6. Feb 14, 2014
    7
    Funny. Really funny and sweet. Several words can be used to describe Bad Santa, but only "Good" actually stands out. Because it was good. Good enough for me to hope for a sequel. Expand
  7. Nov 12, 2012
    5
    We get it. Billy Bob Thorton is a foul-mouthed, drunken criminal- but wait- this kid thinks he's the real Santa Claus. It's been done before- and the joke gets old fast. Expand

See all 77 User Reviews

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