It’s been a very quiet production, but the trailer for Silent Night – a remake of the 1984 cult classic Silent Night, Deadly Night – has arrived online. And you know what, it actually looks kind of good.
For those of you who might be unaware, Silent Night, Deadly Night was a movie directed by Charles E. Sellier Jr. that caused so much outrage it was banned in America after only a couple of weeks on the big screen and didn’t get an international release. The movie however did grab a lot of attention and had it not been pulled, it could have taken more money than Wes Craven’s A Nightmare on Elm Street which was released the same year. The movie was about a tormented teenager who witnessed his mother get raped and his parents get murdered by a guy dressed up like Santa Claus. Years later, this troubled soul would go onto wreak his own revenge on the world with a murderous rampage in the same style of costume that his parents' killer wore. The film amazingly spawned four sequels, one of which hosts the popular Internet Meme “Garbage Day!”
Looking back on the film now, it’s not really anything special but it’s certainly worth a look at. While I don’t think it’s a masterpiece, I do think it’s a lot of fun and can easily see why it has its cult reputation. You can pick up a really good DVD version that was released by Arrow Films a few years back quite cheap these days.
This 2012 remake doesn’t look to follow the plot of the original too closely, as it seems the only thing it has in common with the 1984 movie is a guy dressed as Santa and half of the title. However the trailer does seem to give the movie a fairly light hearted tone in terms of over-the-top violence, which means it could have more in common with Santa’s Slay rather than Silent Night, Deadly Night. That's not to say that the film doesn’t look like it could be scary - the Santa mask is terrifying and the tension looks like it’s been ramped up to 11.
In Silent Night, Malcolm McDowell is trying to track down a masked killer who dresses as Santa and goes from town to town murdering people on Christmas Eve. He does this with a variety of weapons including the traditional axe as well as more creative items like wood chippers and flame throwers. Got to be honest, it does look cool. McDowell seems to be hamming it up on screen while Jaime King will be the movie's scream queen in what I imagine will be a fairly forgettable performance.
Silent Night looks to be a lot of fun. The Santa mask looks genuinely creepy and if the movie can retain the atmosphere of the trailer then we should be in for a really entertaining ride. My only concern is whether we’re ever going to see a cinema release. The end of the credits claim it will be shown in “selective” cinemas which means we’ll likely get a direct-to-DVD release over here sometime next year. I know I’ll be the first (and probably only person) in line to buy it at my local ASDA.
I’m not saying Silent Night will be the greatest slasher movie ever made, but it certainly looks a lot of fun. Between this and the Evil Dead remake, I’d almost be tempted to say that the dark days of terrible horror remakes are behind us.
Luke Owen is a freelance copywriter working for Europe’s biggest golf holiday provider as their web content executive.