Not too long ago I found out that Rue Morgue Magazine’s ‘Cinemacabre Movie Night’ would be screening Silent Night, Deadly Night in Toronto. I decided to ask my wife if she would with me to see it, and surprisingly (she’s not a horror fan) she accepted the invitation. Unfortunately, for the past couple of weeks I’ve been fighting, on again, off again, with this bastardly flu/cold and I passed it onto wifey. Since we were both quite sick and feeling like crap, I decided we would just watch my copy of the movie at home. Going into it, I warned my wife that the first few minutes might be enough for her to ask me to turn the movie off. She was well warned. Surprisingly, she made it through the film unscathed, and I even dare say, entertained!
My thoughts on the movie itself…
Little Billy watched his parents get murdered in cold blood (there was snow outside) by some psycho dressed as Santa Claus. Little Billy was understandably shocked and disturbed by this incident. His little brother was in the car when this happened, so I guess he wouldn’t be as emotionally scarred as Billy was (or was he?).
Later on Billy and his little brother are living in an orphanage where the Mother Superior makes Billy’s life a living hell. Billy grows up to be a big, built young man that seems well-adjusted, with the exception of his psychological terror of all things Santa Claus-related.
Not that I think spoilers would mean much for potential viewers of this movie, but I’ll leave the rest of the story for you to see. This flick is the perfect nostalgic kick-back for any fan of 80’s slasher flicks, or horror from the era. Watching it was absolutely enjoyable and a real treat since I have not seen it in many years. It was also fun watching it with the wife.
The soundtrack in this movie kicks some serious ass. I could easily imagine listening to it while driving around town. It’s actually that good. I’d like to blast this movie soundtrack with the window down while Christmas carolers are singing the same old Holiday tunes. I raise a glass of egg nogg in salute to Perry Botkin, who composed the brilliant music.
Another well done aspect is the kills. The body count is actually higher than I remembered it being, but as we all know, it’s the quality and creativity of the kills, rather than the quantity that counts. And this film delivers the goodies in spades. Once Billy dons that Santa suit and snaps, things get reeeaaal fun.
They just don’t make ’em like this anymore. I do plan on watching the remake titled simply, ‘Silent Night.’ Why they failed to include the ‘Deadly Night’ portion of the original’s title, is beyond me, and blasphemy.
I think I enjoyed this film even more than the first time I saw it so many years ago. For me, Christmas Evil aka You Better Watch Out (1980), had always been to me the flag-bearer of Santa-Horror. Rewatching Silent Night, Deadly Night, has made me have to rethink this a little.
If you are a horror fan, and have never seen this, watch it asap, right before Christmas. Better yet, gather your family around on Christmas Eve and watch it with them. Share the joys of this great little 80’s slasher gem.