M. Nichols | West Chester, OH United States | 10/10/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I stumbled upon this absolute gem of a film when navigating various reviews and favorite item lists and the overwhelming praise persuaded me to purchase this film before having seen it. I must say that I'm on the bandwagon; BLACK CHRISTMAS is, without a doubt, one of the best horror films I've ever seen.Pre-dating HALLOWEEN by several years, that classic is now somewhat diminished in my estimation, as it is obvious that John Carpenter lifted many of BLACK CHRISTMAS' finest elements for HALLOWEEN. 1979's WHEN A STRANGER CALLS was another attempt at a clone, the opening of which, previously considered by this reviewer to be one of the finer moments in horror film history, seems like mere child's play compared to the terrifying phone calls received in BLACK CHRISTMAS.A simple tale of a half-empty sorority house over the holidays, BLACK CHRISTMAS focuses on Olivia Hussey and housemates, including Margot Kidder and Andrea Martin, as they receive a series of sinister phone calls, starting as obscene and building towards terrifyingly unsettling, and those around them begin to disappear. The pacing is perfect and the performances are all top-notch. Well-written and expertly directed, the tension in BLACK CHRISTMAS is well-maintained, with no lulls in the story nor "fake" scares to cheat the audience.With remarkably little gore or bloodshed, BLACK CHRISTMAS nonetheless culminates in one of the most intense climaxes ever experienced in horror films. You'll have to see it for yourself to understand completely, but what is scariest about BLACK CHRISTMAS are the things you never know. Who is Billy? What did he do to baby Agnes? When will anyone find what's waiting in the attic?"
My Poor Mother ...
DonMac | Lynn, MA United States | 10/03/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"We talked her into taking us to see this when it came out and she has never let us forget it. At the time, they even gave out little badges to the audience that said: It's Going to be a Black Christmas this Year. Wish I still had that!
Anyway one of the first, best slasher horror films ever. Halloween can say thanks. When a Stranger Calls can say thanks ... This is one scary flick. Sorority girls on campus over Christmas are, unknowingly, being slaughtered one at a time by a menancing stranger who will not stop calling their house.
Cast is fine re: suspects and gals in peril. Margot Kidder is very funny as the bad girl and the ending is, well, great! A classic."
The real Black Christmas in HD, but still not a definitive e
Hellbilly DRP | NC Piedmont | 12/23/2008
(4 out of 5 stars)
"There is no need to discuss what a classic the original Black Christmas is. That has been done at length by reviewers for other releases. This review is specifically for the Black Christmas [Blu-ray] edition.
The transfer and sound are great. There are still some traces of foreign matter visible from the print used, but this is the nicest copy you'll probably ever see on a home edition. I believe it is the same transfer used for the Special Edition in 2006.
The features are identical to the Special Edition release: - 12 Days of Black Christmas featurette - Midniht Q&A - Interviews ( Olivia Hussey, Margot Kidder, and Art Hindle) - 'Uncovered' Sound scenes
My only complaint is the lack of subtitles or commentaries, and for that reason I only give 4 stars. Apparently space limitations were the problem on the Special Edition. That would not be a problem on blu ray. It seems the rights to the commentaries from the 2002 Collector's Edition are owned by another company so those were not available, but it seems that new actor commentaries might have been obtained for this edition.
Sadly, Bob Clark was killed by a drunk driver in 2007. For fans wanting the director's commentary, the collector's edition is the only option and will become increasingly harder to obtain.
If you have the Special Edition and an upconvert dvd player you might give this one a miss, as there are no new features to speak of. If you have a blu ray player and don't already own the special edition, the Blu-ray edition is the way to go. Of course, you can hold out for a "Definitive Edition". There's always next Christmas..."
A Horror CLASSIC in every sense of the word!
R. Riemensnyder | Wilkes-Barre, PA United States | 10/27/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Oh man, where do I start? This film is one of my favorite horror films. It has the right mixture of horror, suspense, and comedy. It also has small amounts of gore (well, by today's standards) which is a good thing to some viewers.The plot of the film is simple. It takes place at a sorority house/boarding school around Christmas time. A crazed killer finds his way into the attic of the house and starts making obscene phone calls from the second phone line. Then, he starts offing the inhabitants of the house one by one. Olivia Hussey stars as the film's heroine and Keir Dullea co-stars as her misunderstood love interest... but Margot Kidder steals the show as Hussey's drunken, foul mouthed friend. A very young Andrea Martin (of SCTV fame) is also in the film.This film inspired elements of the Scream movies, When A Stranger Calls, and countless others. I recommend it to anyone who loves a good scary movie."
SCARIEST FILM EVER MADE.
Richard P. Whitney | Huntington Station, N.Y. | 09/24/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I saw this film when it first came out years ago. I have never forgotten it. In fact, whenever I discuss horror films with horror film fans, I need only describe the plotline about "the guy in the attic movie with Olivia Hussey" - everyone knows exactly what film I am talking about. To a man or woman the response is the same - "it scared the hell out of me".
Its' hard to believe that Bob Clark made this film as well as the Porky's trilogy- but hey, comedy and horror both take talent. Halloween, Friday the Thirteenth, Nightmare on Elmstreet,et al, all copy elements contained in this truly frightening film.
It takes place at a off-campus house over Christmas break. It involves a group of young college women who, unbeknownst to them, have a visitor. Thats all I'll say. I've never forgotten this film.
Even after buying the DVD (and its' great with lots of extras), and having Bob Clark explain exactly how he made this film, it still scares me. Hardly any blood or gore-just incredibly imaginative,intense, film making. Just try watching it alone.
As the saying goes "you won't sleep through it", in fact you might have a hard time ever sleeping again, at least in a house with a large attic in it.
The surprise ending still works. Oh yea, it still works-"Agnes, its' me, Billy"................................ "