Silent Night, Deadly Night
(R, 1:24:52, Released 1984)
|Release Date:||Nov 9, 1984|
|DVD Release Date:||Oct 7, 2003|
|Starring:||Gilmer McCormick, Toni Nero, Robert Brian Wilson, Britt Leach, Nancy Borgenicht, H.E.D. Redford, Danny Wagner, Jonathan Best, Tara Buckman, Lilyan Chauvin|
|Directed by:||Charles E. Sellier Jr|
|Synopsis:||Fangoria Presents unwraps Charles E Sallier Jr.'s 1984 holiday cult horror classic SILENT NIGHT, DEADLY NIGHT, in theaters this December! SILENT NIGHT, DEADLY NIGHT tells the tale of Billy Chapmen, orphaned at five after witnessing the murder of his parents at the hands of a Santa suit-clad madman on Christmas Eve. Now eighteen and out of the brutal grip of orphanage nuns, Billy is forced to confront his greatest fear, sending him on a rampage, leaving a crimson trail in the snow behind him. Fangoria Presents, in conjunction with Screenvision, delivers this seasonal slasher essential in a stunning new HD transfer for the ultimate experience in ho-ho-horror!|
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July 15, 2012
Considering that there have been far worst films since its release in 1984. I understand why this film may have gotten such flack, but this isn't the only Christmas themed horror film. Black Christmas came out in 1974, and although it didn't include a killer Santa, it still had a killer killing people during the Christmas period. Personally I don't see what all the fuss is about. There are far more violent films out there in the genre and they're lauded and acclaimed as reinventing the genre. As a whole, Silent Night, Deadly Night is no different than any other Slasher film. Aside from the Christmas theme, there's nothing truly different. This is a fun cheesy good time where you see an evil Santa kill off people. I always hated Santa Claus, so using his costume for the killer didn't offend me. Like I said, I understand why the film got vilified, but if you think about it very carefully, it's a pretty silly premise for a Slasher film, and it's not one to take seriously whatsoever. This will surely appeal to fans of the genre, and along with Black Christmas remains a classic of the genre. This film is also a reminder that mainstream critics should take a chill pill and realize that these films aren't meant for them. By today's standards it's hard to believe that this was ever controversial. Considering the Saw franchise and Hostel trilogy, Silent Night, Deadly Night is a fairly tame film.
March 7, 2012
Hard to see what all the fuss was about by todays standards but suppose it was a bit shocking for '84. The film does look really dated now and is just unintentionally funny rather than scary or gruesome. A very poor film with cheap effects, bad acting and little plot. The good things are the typical 80's slasher feel to it, a few inventive kills and plenty of nudity. Hard to think it got 4 sequels!
November 9, 2011
I can't say that I could heartily recommend Silent Night, Deadly Night to your average horror fan. The first half of the movie shows how the killer got to be the killer, and it's not all that interesting. The movie doesn't really start being fun until he goes on his murderous rampage. Thankfully the print that I saw had all of the gore footage cut back into it, which makes it far more interesting. If it hadn't been there, it probably would've been a little boring. Everything from an ax, a hammer, a set of christmas lights, a bow and arrow, and even a set of antlers from a deer head wall mount get put to use during this spree. It's also funny hearing him before the kill when he screams "PUNISH!" I suppose if you like origin stories/holiday murder sprees then you might find some pleasure in it, even if it is cheap and mundane.
June 10, 2011
A blood and sleaze filled slasher about a teenager with a traumatised past who goes on a festive killing spree dressed as Santa Claus. This one got the mothers' panties in a twist with its depictions of unflinching violence, sex and nudity tarnashing the image of jolly ol' saint Nick. It's an enjoyable entry into the slasher world made during the golden years of the genre but it's not up there with my favourites. Perfect viewing after endless hours of tedious christmas TV spent with the family.
September 12, 2009
I've wanted to see this notorious shocker ever since I heard about the storm of controversy that blew up surrounding it from the rather excellent 1987 documentary Hollywood Uncensored starring Peter Fonda. The trailer alone made me think it would be worth checking out. Add to that the fact that it's never been properly released in Britain (the BBFC banned the sequel outright!) and you have a heady brew that can't fail to entice students of the forbidden and the sleazy. So hats off to Anchor Bay for a long overdue uncut release for this grimy little treasure.
In case you didn't know, this is the flick where a young lad sees his parents brutally murdered by a bellowing maniac in a Santee outfit on Christmas Eve, spends the rest of his life in an orphanage run by nuns who make the poor kid's life pretty miserable and winds up working in a toy shop. Then, when Christmas rolls around, the kid naturally has to dress up as Santa Claus to amuse the little tykes. Something snaps inside him and he goes on a blood-soaked killing spree, throttling people with fairy lights, beheading sledders with a big old axe, impaling women on deers' antlers (honestly!) and other fun stuff that's bound to put you off your figgy pudding. That pair of pompous buffoons Siskel and Ebert really went to town condemning this one, and when you consider that Ebert was one of the few (only?) mainstream critics to praise Wes Craven's Last House On the Left on its debut release, that's pretty shocking in itself. But then Krug and company didn't carry out their gruesome atrocities done up as jolly Saint Nick, did they? Within the first twenty-something minutes of Silent Night, Deadly Night I could see why this got all those PTA members and angry mothers baying for the producers' blood. Even to a jaded exploitation buff like me, the sight of a sick freak in a Santa suit shooting the young protagonist's father before stripping his mother (who looks like Emily Symons, incidentally) and slashing her throat is pretty strong stuff. Add to this the fact that the lad's infant brother screams and cries throughout this scene and you have a uniquely uncomfortable combination, designed to upset the family values brigade and censors alike. Bare breasts, check. Blood, check. Profanity, check. Horrible crimes witnessed by the innocent, check. Screaming baby, check. Jeez, it's like a seasonal take on Fight For Your Life! Then there's the stridently anti-religious subplot that runs through the film (the Mother Superior is a chilling screen villain who must be seen to be believed) and the large doses of mean-spirited to-hell-with-it-all cynicism (one of the suspects shot by the bonehead cops is a deaf priest who dresses up as Santa every year to bring cheer to the orphans, for Pete's sake!) to contend with. The film twangs just about every raw nerve you can think of. There's barely a likable character in sight - even the outwardly likable toy shop owner (who reminds me of Jim Nabors circa the Best Little Whorehouse In Texas) turns out to be an annoying drunk loudmouth - and how about that shiver-inducing moment where a sweet-faced tot confronts the Santa-suited murderer, believing him to be the genuine article, only for him to gift her a bloody Stanley knife! Had Ebeneezer Scrooge lived in the late 20th century, this flick would have had the grumpy old sinner squirming with delight.
Silent Night, Deadly Night came along pretty late in the day as far as the dwindling exploitation / grind-house genre was concerned. This kind of low-budget, independent, envelope-pushing shock fodder had a final blood-spurting burst of activity in the early 80s before video came along and ruined the fun forever, and for that reason alone, SNDN stands as a prime example of a dying breed, a mutant, screeching offspring sired by a rampaging but doomed beast on the brink of extinction. Not even upping the controversy as much as the makers of this undeniably effective and morbidly entertaining splatter flick could save the genre from sinking into the straight-to-video bargain bins, which is kind of a shame - when it comes to eighties chills and spills, I'd take SNDN over corporate-whoring populist schlock like that fraudulent camp-it-up poster-boy Freddie Krueger and his endless crummy sequels any old time.
Now bring us the figgy pudding. We won't go until we've got some.
December 27, 2008
Silent Night, Deadly Night is one of those rare hollywood movies crassly created soley to exploit the holiday season, and yet, I doubt even the film's creators could've forseen the kind of controvery they'd generate. Well, maybe. The lead character goes on a killing spree after years of mental abuse (and I'm sure this probably describes the writer of the screenplay as well) by the nuns at the orphanage where he was placed after his parents were murdered by a man dressed as Santa Claus. But enough about the plot. Anyway, describing the plot of this movie is like describing the plot of "Pink Flamingoes", there's no doing it justice with mere words. Unlike a Roger Waters film though, I'm not even so sure "Silent Night, Deadly Night" falls under the category of "kitschy" so much as just plain bad. It's maybe even spectacularly bad. Slow-moving at times, nonsensical at others, it has the sensibility of being written by a 12 year old boy (especially the scene where two bullies steal a couple of smaller kids' snow sleds). In the producer's rush to create a christmas version of "Halloween", they failed to think of the consequences of having television commercials for this movie portraying Santa Claus gunning down convenience store clerks and raping women. A monumental miscalculation of marketing and just a bad idea in general, this movie had everything going against it before it was even released (on their review show, Siskel and Ebert read off a list of everyone involved in this film, reciting "shame, shame" after each name was read). Now, as a dvd release, it's virtually a "play-at-home" version of Mystery Science Theater 3000.
November 18, 2008
It has some inspired kills and a few creative scenes but the rest falls into the mundane catagory.
December 5, 2007
Awesome idea. It's sad that good directors never try their hands at great movie ideas like this though.
August 11, 2007
Mediocre quality which misses the mark; the ultimate killer Santa movie hasn't been made yet. This one has some dark disturbing elements which makes it scary and not much fun. They went up to part 5 with these!
December 24, 2010
"Christmas" and "slasher movie" are apparently two concepts that do not mix well together. 1974's Black Christmas was a bust (and so, for that matter, was the 2006 remake), and the only stuff Hollywood seems interested in putting out today on the subject is direct-to-video schlock like Santa's Slay and Jack Frost. In fact, the only movie that even came close to making that nauseating high-concept cocktail work was 1984's cult phenomena Silent Night, Deadly Night, another offering from the holiday-horror wave that followed John Carpenter's original Halloween and gave us such notable knock-offs as April Fool's Day, New Year's Evil, My Bloody Valentine, and, of course, Friday the 13th. Following the tried and true recipe for exploitation- naked breasts and graphic bloodshed- Silent Night, Deadly Night pissed off a lot of parents due to its killer-in-a-Santa-suit subject matter, and ended up being pulled by its distributors due to P.T.A. protest; this, of course, simply lent the film a legendary status among horror aficionados, and all subsequent re-releases and home entertainment formats promoted it almost exclusively on the firestorm of controversy that surrounded it. Watching it now, it's still easy to see why Reagan-era moms would have such a big problem with it- not just because the killer dresses as Santa, but because this is a dark film if taken seriously. In fact, the main character is actually the killer himself- the first fifty minutes of the movie are devoted to exploring the killer's backstory and motivations, charting every pit and chasm in his slow and inexorable descent into madness, and by the time he starts hacking people up, there's not a protagonist in sight; because we have no one to identify with but the killer, the film isn't just a slasher movie, but it's also kind of a tragedy, as we watch the gradual degradation and final destruction of the hero brought about ultimately by his own demons. Sure, it's got some typical '80s cheese in it, and the exploitation comes on a little strong (the opening murder of the killer's parents in particular is WAY too much), but of the troupe of post-Halloween slashers, this is definitely the cream of the crop.
Like I said, this movie's kinda unique among the cookie-cutter horror stable of the "Me" decade in that the main character is the killer himself- which means no virginal heroine or standard horror cliche characters, but it also means that once the hero goes into full-on psycho mode, there's no longer anyone for the audience to identify with. Still, the set-up is pretty well-done, if a bit unlikely: young Billy Chapman and his parents take a trip to see Grandpa in a mental institution, where the supposedly catatonic old man delivers a foreboding (and incredibly hammy) warning to the young boy- beware good ol' Saint Nick, because while he gives presents to good little boys and girls, he punishes those who have been naughty. With a set up like that, it's no surprise when, on the ride home that night, Billy's mother and father are horribly murdered before his eyes by a guy who just happens to be in a Santa costume. Flash forward a couple of years, and little Billy is in an orphanage, where we see that the poor kid has developed some entirely understandable issues with Christmas and Kris Kringle. Because he's in a Catholic orphanage, however- and because this is an exploitation flick- the stern Mother Superior decides against getting the boy the psychological help that he needs, opting instead to belt him whenever he starts acting up and instilling in him the idea that "punishment is good". We then jump forward ten years, where we find little Billy all grown up and working in a toy store. As Christmastime approaches, Billy starts to get more and more anxious, and when the store's Santa breaks his ankle and the owner enlists Billy to fill the big red suit, that is finally the last straw. Poor Billy snaps like a dry chicken bone, picking up an axe and going on a yuletide rampage to punish those who've been "naughty"; gratuitous violence follows shortly thereafter.
Not only is Billy our main character, but he's quite a sympathetic one as played by Robert Brian Wilson. The guy's a big, blond, all-American boy scout-type when we first meet him as an adult- a little too reserved, maybe, but affable and good with kids, with a really open face and a kind nature. But when the holidays start approaching, we begin to see the stress building up in his demeanor; you have to feel bad for the guy as he grapples with the mounting neuroses that keep him from approaching the girl he's interested in for fear of being "naughty"- the ultimate resolution of which is pretty bleak. When he finally loses it, though... things get a little silly. First of all, it's pretty strange to see his handsome, innocent-looking face peering out of a Santa wig and fake beard as he goes about his business- he doesn't really look like a stone-cold killer so much as a kid up to some mischievous hijinks. Secondly, the filmmakers have him stupidly shouting "punish!" and "naughty!" as he goes about his slashings, robbing him of any menace as he chases down his prey; this is not a character with a lot of slasher-villain cred. Still, he's a surprisingly fleshed-out character, and he's quite well-played by Wilson; don't be surprised if you're actually saddened by his inevitable downfall come film's end. Probably the only other really important character in the film would be the evil Mother Superior, played by Lilyan Chauvin, and BOY is she a hateful creature. Played with just a hint of a German accent (not that Germans are evil or anything, but, y'know... they are), Mother Superior is the embodiment of callous authority, less interested in protecting Billy's fragile ego than she is in getting him to behave like everyone else. What really sucks, though, is that she never gets her comeuppance- and you really want to see her get her comeuppance. Aside from them, there are only a few notable characters: Toni Nero is cute (if not smart enough NOT to insult a psychotic Santa-suited killer) as Pamela, Billy's would-be love interest; Gilmer McCormick is a decent pseudo-heroine as Sister Margaret, the only nun at the orphanage who seems to give a crap about Billy and the one who has to chase him down with the cops when he starts offing people; Britt Leach is unbelievably slimy as Mr. Sims, the toy store owner; and Will Hare (of Back to the Future fame... sorta) is pretty damn laughable as the menacing grandpa- not the least because the kid playing Billy at age five (Jonathan Best) never reacts to him, no matter how over the top he gets.
The script by Michael Hickey deserves props if for no other reason than that it manufactured an acceptable reason for someone to be afraid of Santa Claus, of all people; however, the sheer number of horrible things that happen to the main character around Christmas is just a little unbelievable. First his grandpa gives him that ominous warning (and how weird is it that his gramps just happened to be the only person in the whole freaking universe to think that Santa is evil? No one thinks that!), and then THAT VERY NIGHT his parents are murdered by a Father Christmas wannabe. Wow, THAT'S a big coincidence. But it doesn't stop there: sadistic nuns, unrequited love, and an attempted rape (that flashes Billy back to his parents' deaths) ALL center around Christmas somehow; in fact, I don't really blame Billy for going insane, because it's like someone is intentionally orchestrating his life to fall to pieces whenever December 25th rolls around! (Which, well, I guess is actually true, but c'mon... if we could explain away EVERY plot contrivance just by saying it happened "'cause the writer said so", what would the point be of even reviewing movies?) The direction is nothing special- in keeping with exploitation cinema, style is not a big feature in the way the movie was shot. The best thing I can say about it is that it makes some creative use of shadows at times- light from a keyhole illuminating an eye, the execution of a violent murder in silhouette, stuff like that. Speaking of "execution" and "violence", the gore in the movie is pretty cheap, but effective; the one major make-up effect, a woman getting impaled on a set of deer antlers, is milked for all its worth in at least three close-ups, and there's one decent decapitation gag, but for the most part the effects are just blood-squirting knives and cut-off stabbing make-ups... which is fine, because the gore doesn't really sell the story as much as the psychological plight of the main character does. The soundtrack is loaded with Christmas songs I have never heard outside of the context of this film, and the score sounds like a cat having a seizure on a synthesizer keyboard.
I can see why a movie like Silent Night, Deadly Night eventually became a cult phenomena, while the other dime-a-dozen holiday slashers of the time have long since been forgotten. There's an attractive subversive edge to the film, both due to its subject matter and the parental hysteria surrounding it, that's just too powerful for a horror buff to ignore; yet at the same time, there's actually a pretty decent story here under all the layers of exploitation and cheese. It's a tragedy about a man so consumed by the trauma and the fears of his past that he literally becomes his own worst nightmare, systematically destroying everything he cares about because the shame and guilt that's been foisted upon him has convinced him that everything he really wants out of life is evil. Maybe I'm over-analyzing it, but that's what I got out of Silent Night, Deadly Night, and it really struck a chord with me. This movie would go on to spawn a final tally of four sequels (the first of which is notorious for being the source of the YouTube clip "GARBAGE DAY!", and features Eric Roberts as Billy's equally psychotic little brother Ricky), but none of them would have the same appeal as the first one, no matter how many goons they stuffed into Santa suits, because they lacked a strong central character. Our hero/villain, Billy Chapman, may not be the kind of splatter-film icon that his contemporaries Michael Myers and Jason Voorhees turned out to be, but he's a far more complex and sympathetic character than either of them, and probably any other cinematic stalker you could think of this side of the Frankenstein monster. Just try not to focus too much on the inane shouting.
January 3, 2011
Right, a few things before I get to my actual review for this one. First off I know everyone saw that I was reviewing Slasher films around Christmas and I didn't see this one and it perplexed everyone. Well, now I have so are you Happy? I saw it! Here you go I saw it and I'm writing a review of it! So there. Yeah. We all good now? Good. (I'm too late with this one aren't I?) Well you happy Jessie P? I got it right this time. So there. :)
Also, I have a story with this one. My mother was talking to me (and I don't remember how this subject came up) and she told me a story about how when she was in her teenage years, she had gone to see a slasher film with a friend and her young sister She told my young aunt that whenever something bad was going to happen, she would put her coat over my aunt's face to shield her eyes. As it happened, my aunt spent pretty much the whole movie with the coat over her eyes something that deeply annoyed her. My mother finished the story by saying that she couldn't remember the title of the movie but she did remember that it had a killer Santa in it. I being me immediately said "Was it Silent Night, Deadly Night?" and my mother said "yes, yes it was" and given that at that time I was not allowed to watch films of this nature she said "How do you know about Silent Night, Deadly Night?" I simply smiled and looked a the camera while the Twilight Zone theme played in the background. Anyway, I'm boring you I'm sure.
Finally I would like to say that I know that this film was heavily protested when this came out. I find that terribly ironic. That got the film much more attention than it would have otherwise received. I have observed life and I have found this to be true: If you want someone to see your film, ban it. If you want someone to read your book, make a big deal about it and try to get it banned, If you want someones ideas to really take hold and grow, martyr them. Yeah anyway, Silent Night, Deadly Night.
Acting/Characters: I still don't understand how and/or why some characters can be so dumb. By far the most unintelligent person in the film was Mother Superior. In the beginning of the film she was more evil than the killer was at the end. I would even go so far as to say she molded the killer to be a killer despite consistent warnings of that happening. I don't blame the killer for turning into the killer really. It makes sense. There weren't really any characters that I liked but there were some that I felt that I could stand watching. The Killer in particular but that isn't really abnormal. The killer, identity known or not, is usually the most interesting character. 4.5/10
Plot: Kinda unique for a horror film. The killer is still slicing up bimbos and airheads so that hasn't changed. But the idea of a killer Santa Clause was really new for the time. So, at least I can praise the director for a fresh take on the genre. But, frankly that's the only thing that has changed. The plot is still predictable in most parts particularly the exposition leading up to when the killer starts killing. I mean, can't you at least try to hide it? I know that since it is a slasher film and the opening scenes totally give away who the killer will be but yeah. At least try to make it so that I won;t know exactly how everything is going to happen in the first 20 minutes. But it is a better effort than many I have seen. 4.5/10
Screenplay: Again, not the worst I have ever seen but certainly it is no Scream. It's not even the original Nightmare on Elm Street. But it certainly is not as bad as say, Slaughter High or something like that. It was only okay. there were definitely some horrible lines in there but for the most part, it was just barely passable. 4.5/10
Likableness: You know, I was kinda entertained by it. Not the best slasher film around (as everyone knows I'm sure, I give that award to Scream) But certainly not the worst. This is another entry in a list of "Slasher films that if someone is holding a gun to your head and demands you watch a bad Slasher Film" that I would suggest. It wasn't too terrible. 5/10
Final Score: 18.5/40 46% (M)
Trivia Time: 1. The release of this film was picketed by angry parents who were not happy to see Santa Claus depicted as an axe murderer. As a result, box office sales plummeted and the film was shelved for another year where it saw new light in an uncut video form (that has since gone out of print).
2. This film was planned to be a limited release but open wider by Christmas, but the protest canned the idea, and was pulled after two weeks of release.
3. To protest the film, critics Roger Ebert and Gene Siskel read the credits out loud on their television show saying, "shame, shame, shame" after each name.
4. This film was known as "Slayride" though out its production. Tri-Star decided to change the title to "Silent Night, Deadly Night" at the last minute. The title "Slay Ride" actually ended up as a subplot in another film, the Disney holiday movie Ernest Saves Christmas (1988). In the Ernest film, the prospective Santa that Ernest was looking for was appearing in a horror film entitled "Christmas Slay".
5. The toyshop where Billy gets his first job is called "IRA'S TOYS", Ira is the first name of one of the film's producers.
December 19, 2010
Ah, an old Christmas Classic. Not bad as a slasher flick either. I liked how the story was centered on the killer rather than the victims for a change. Some excellent kill scenes and plenty of boobies. All in all a pretty good time, with lots of christmas cheer (fear!)
October 23, 2009
low grade horror film about a psycho who dresses up like Santa and kills those who've been naughty, while using his catch phrase, "Punish!". fairly lame but mildly entertaining. lots of boobs.
December 20, 2008
One night after visiting one very crazy grandpa Bobby and his family are driving home when they come upon a man who seems to be seeking help since he is dressed as santa and tis the season and all they offer him a ride in return they get killed bobby sees all this happen before his eyes and ends up in a orphanage where things also dont work out for poor old bobby since the nun there likes to abuse him fast forward some bobby snaps and you can pretty much guess what happens next yes all on christmas. As a horror fan i should have seen this movie long ago i just thought it was really good even though yes a guy killin people while dressed as santa does have a cheesy feel too it anyway any horror fan should see this movie before they are PUNISHED!!! you'll know what i mean
January 31, 2013
Just gave this the now traditional yearly re-watch, such a fun film, well worth the watch, it's become a new tradition for each Christmas season.
Full of corny performances and cheesy 80's staples, this is an enjoyable little slasher flick that was once the victim of attempted bannings. Now it just feels like a quaint snapshot of the 80's, full of silly characters, quasi-believable situations and gratuitous nudity.
Worth a rental at the very least to get that "Miracle On 34th Street" taste out of your mouth.
December 28, 2012
This is pretty cheesy, but if you enjoy those kinds of 80's slashers, then you may enjoy this one too.
December 25, 2012
A slasher about the effects of trauma and abuse inflicted upon a child. Witnessing his parents Christmas-time murder, the brothers are sent to an abusive orphanage. His angst comes alive one Christmas as he goes out punishing the "naughty" (who are surprisingly nude, much of the time).
April 17, 2010
This is the first movie to ever terrify me. It isn't nearly as scary as it was when I was eight but still holds a special place in my heart.
December 27, 2009
I just had the luxury of seeing an original film print in theaters. The backstory is pretty good but the rest of the movie is just laughably bad. There couldn't be a worse montage song than the one used in this movie, the owner of the toy store seemed to have some strange pedophile tendencies, etc. If you've seen the movie, you know all the hilariously bad parts and the hilariously good parts. There are some intense scenes which seems to change the movie from a comedy to a heavy psychological thriller, but they don't last too long either. Half of the movie, you'll be staring at the background to recognize all the classic toys from the period, instead of paying attention to the actors. One thing I really liked is that the bullies that steal the sleds are very reminiscent of Beavis and Butthead and they also have the best death scene.
August 24, 2009
I'm a sucker for holiday-themed slasher flicks, so this one had been on my list for a very long time. It holds up as an entertaining, albeit typical, slasher that more often than not had me in near-hysterics laughing. I know that response isn't intended, but, my goodness. When your antagonist's rallying cry is "NAUUUUUUUUUUUUGHTTTTYYY!!" I dunno what else one can really expect.
August 10, 2008
It?s Christmas Eve and after a creepy visit to grandpa in the sanitarium, Billy witnesses his parents? rape and murder at the hands of an assailant dressed as good ol? Saint Nick. Placed into an orphanage, Billy is then physically and mentally abused by an angry nun (Chauvin) who has little sympathy for children who have been through trauma and feels she can help him through punishment. Flash forward to present day when teenage Billy (Wilson) is forced to wear the dreaded Santa outfit for his job. This sets the scene for a mid 80?s slasher that is far better than many of its higher-budgeted and better remembered peers. Though the dialog is somewhat amateurish and the acting is occasionally sub par, Silent Night Deadly Night?s story is strong enough to carry it through. During the initial 20-30 minutes of back-story, we are provided with an explanation for anything the movie throws at us for the remainder of the film ? a much more solid foundation than is ever given during Halloween or Friday the 13th. And yes, the film is unintentionally laughable as many of its genre, for its extremity and creativity of kills (including an antler impaling!) but this simply adds to the fun. Silent Night Deadly Night is a tragically overlooked and underrated ?calendar slasher,? and while not necessarily original, it delivers the formula more adeptly than many others.
May 24, 2008
Ahhhh... an unsung classic. It wasn't spectacular, but, at the time, it was definately new and controversial... by today's standards of days upon days of slasher movies, this one will get little notice... tis a shame...
February 29, 2008
Yeah, the first 30 minutes or so were a tad boring, but without them the rest of the movie would've been pretty bad. But the next hour is awesome slasher fun! A killer dressed as Santa Claus killing everybody in his way! A pretty good slasher flick. Avoid the sequel at all costs!
January 12, 2008
Good holiday film to watch with family & friends.It has all the traditional elements of a good horror movie, including setting,story background & a creepy killer that dresses as Santa Claus.
December 18, 2007
By no means is this a good movie but watching Santa kill a childs family on the side of the road is always a good holiday center piece.