Cast: Robert Brian Wilson, Gilmer McCormick, Lilyan Chauvin, Linnea Quigley
Arrow Films / PAL Region 2 / Certification 18 / 16×9 Widescreen / English Language / Color / 82 minutes
Twas the night before Christmas. when all through the house, not a creature was stirring except a Santa Claus dressed like a psychotic maniac with a blood stained, double sided axe and a thirst for punishment against the very, very naughty! Okay, so I’m terrible at rhymes but I watch pretty awesome flicks, especially about ones that deal with a murderously jolly St. Nick. Think about it, what does Santa Claus do on Christmas Eve? An unshaven fat man uses children-like people to slave all year round making toys. Hopped up on “sugar,” and probably suffering from tundra psychological effects, he rides in a sleigh pulled by flying reindeer and they land on top of your roof, most likely destroying all your shingles and leaving reindeer turds as presents. He then breaks and enters by way of your chimney, he eats your cookies, drinks all your milk and leaves you lumps of coal if he deems you naughty. This guy is pretty wicked already and watching Silent Night, Deadly Night only reaffirms my theory of a malevolent Santa!
All 5 year old Billy ever wanted was to be good and to receive presents from his beloved Santa Claus. That notion was quickly crushed and twisted as his mother and father were slain by a murderer dressed in a Santa suit. Three years later, Billy was subjected to a “punishment is good” discipline by the orphanage’s Mother Superior. Now as a strong 18 year old man with a stock job at a toy store, Billy faces ironic situations that mess with his already fragile mind. Once pushed over the edge, Billy goes on the rampage making sure every foul mouth person, every sexual deviant and every naughty individual receives what they rightly deserve – death!
Silent Night, Deadly Night places itself in the “definitely one of the best Christmas horror films of all time” category; it sits along side Bob Clark’s Black Christmas and the Frosty the Snowman horror spoof Jack Frost (not the Michael Keaton crapfest version). Every horror aficionado has a copy of this film and at least every casual movie goer knows of its existence. What is not to love about this Charles Sellier film? This film involves Christmas, which is the best time of the year, a homicidal crazy dressing up like Santa and breaking naughty peoples’ faces, there is enough sleaze and tits to go around like presents. Lastly, Linnea Quigley (who you might remember as “Trash” from Return of the Living Dead) is an absolute wet dream with minutes upon minutes of pointless toplessness. With stellar material like that, how can you go wrong? There are a few corny lines, surely, and some really bad acting, of course, but those moments can be easily exorcised from one’s memory because you will be immensely drawn in to the holiday spirit.
This holiday horror was produced by the now defunct Trimark Entertainment who tried to cash in on the slasher genre. The company saw dollar signs when the low-budget Friday the 13th and Halloween series were practically getting millions shoved their way. Halloween is a legit holiday so why not try something evil and sinister on Christmas too? In the end, Silent Night, Deadly Night delivered by successfully jump starting a new holiday slasher series, spawning four sequels and a slew of memorable and popular one-liner quotes like, “Naughty!” and “Garbage day!” Though the series fizzled out and became nothing more than a forgettable misfortune, Silent Night, Deadly Night becomes the number one movie to watch during the holiday season by a horror fan.
Arrow Films’ newly released UK DVD version of the film doesn’t break any kind of established grounds. However, the sweet cover art alone makes me cream my pants. The image presentation shines as a restored masterpiece for the most part; however, during some of the more brutal death scenes that excellent quality tapers off to a grainier look as if the scenes were edited out and then put back in without the proper restoration. The audio portion is fantastic with the jingle of every bell, with the impact of every swing of the axe and with the scream of every victim. The disk is a solid just-in-time X-mas gift for those in the UK or anybody with a multi-region DVD player in the States as this is a region 2 release. Pick it up today or else Santa will punish you for your naughtiness!
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