6. Silent Night, Bloody Night

It's your Horror Review Advent Calendar.
25 Christmas themed movies.
Ho, ho, ho.

Director: Theodore Gershuny (1974)
Starring: Patrick O' Neal, James Patterson, Mary Woronov
Find it: IMDB

Galling Giallo with a Christmas twist. A man inherits a mansion that used to be a mental home. Well, didn't they all. After deciding to sell up, he spends Christmas Eve in the house. He and his ladyfriend are promptly murdered by an escapee from another asylum. The killer makes a call to the police station, threatening to murder anyone else who sets foot in the house. Note to Santa, steer clear of this chimney tonight.

It's a minor classic and all, and I did try - but Silent Night, Bloody Night is bleeding dull. Black Christmas was released at around the same time, and it's easy to see how that one went on to inform Halloween whilst Silent Night, Boring Night remains largely forgotten. Although there are enough similarities between this and Carpenter's masterpiece to not discount it altogether. The opening, for example, is remarkably sort of similar (well, in that it has a person escaping from a lunatic asylum in a car).

The plot is convoluted, the acting bad and the script terrible ("that's why I'm holding a gun. You scare me"). The video and sound quality is terrible. Perhaps time would have been more favourable to Silent Night, Bloody Night if it had been properly (or at least partly) restored before its release on DVD.

But it does possess a shabby charm. The black gloved killer stuff is inherently creepy, whilst the flashback sequences are enjoyably shouty. There's some fun sub-video nasty violence. A couple are chopped to bits with an axe. A man is set alight. In the movie's best kill, a woman reaches out into the darkness only to have her hand lopped off.

It has its moments, but not nearly enough of them. If you find your overexcited self unable to sleep this Christmas Eve, pop Silent Night, Bloody Night into your DVD player. It'll have you off to sleep within ten minutes.


  1. saw this just yesterday and enjoyed it a bit more than you. A bit too dull and boring, but overall quite creepy and entertaining.

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