-Reviewed by B-Movie Man Nic Brown
have been a lot of remakes hitting the screen lately. In the last
few years we seen some classics like The Omen,
The Fog, The Hills
Have Eyes, & Dawn of the Dead get what
The updated version of the 1974 film follows a group of sorority sisters who are still in the sorority house on Christmas eve. The house mother (Andrea Martin, who was also in the original 1974 version) tells the girls about Billy the strange son of the house’s former owners. Billy’s evil mother had murdered his father right in front of him on Christmas Eve and then kept him locked in the attic until he escaped on another Christmas Eve when he was 21. He killed his mother and her new husband and made cookies from her flesh to eat. Billy and his younger sister Agnes (whom he also fathered at the age of 12 during a drunken sexual assault by his mother) both survived the night. Billy being locked up in a mental institution and put in a special home until she disappeared.
Conveniently enough, Billy manages to escape after 15 years so he can return to his home and make all the girls “part of his family” which involves killing them in any number of festively holiday related ways including with ice sickles, ice skates (a nod to Michelle Trachtenberg’s recent ice skating film I’m guessing), fountain pens, glass unicorns, and also through some good old fashioned bludgeoning.
One thing that was very disappointing was that the previews and commercials for the film contained a lot of scenes that were not in the movie. It is often the case with films that some content from the trailer doesn’t make it to the final film, but the previews had a lot of very interesting scenes in them and those didn’t make it to the screen. In fact, the preview could almost be for another film there was so much different content.
Overall the film is nothing new, but it does score points for the imaginatively gory methods of murder and especially for Billy’s holiday decorations in the attic and his cookie-cutter cannibalism. Don’t look for any serious innovation or academy award winning performances, but the film does deliver the gore, if not many real twists or surprises. Check out “Black Christmas” if you’re tired of all the holiday cheer.