What I'm Watching: Silent Night
Just when I think I am done with this series...
They make a remake!
Anyways, someone took the idea of a killer Santa Claus and updated it for the slickness of 2012. It's got enough shared DNA with the original movie that yeah, I guess this is a reboot of the franchise. But how does it fare?
I surprisingly reeeally liked this one.
It has its flaws. It has it's cheese, it has its bad acting, but overall, it's quite good. I don't think it is as controversial as the original, nor do I feel that movie should have been as controversial in the first place, but it does have its over the top moments some people will be displeased with. But then, what horror movie worth its blood doesn't?
Nor is the movie as insane as the original's first sequel, but then, what is? Well, #5, but the less said about that, the better.
The plot of Silent Night (Booo to losing the Deadly Night half, that just made for an interesting sounding movie), centers around, that's right, a guy dressed up as Santa Claus and wreaking havoc in a small town.
Yep, it's very much the similar plot to that first movie, but with some major differences. The first movie focuses squarely on the killer, and really delves into his psychology, building up a character profile of this messed up guy. This new take focuses on the police tracking him down, and keeps the killer at arm's length, and you never really learn ANYthing about him until the final moments. This makes the killer more generic, but it's also a fair way to deal with him. Many horror movies do that, and the masked killer is a classic trope. Fair enough.
There are some great kills in this movie, and even a few that reference the original. In fact, this movie is littered with references, and each one made me smile. They let you know that this is an homage to the first, and they were having fun with the idea. There's even a GREAT nod to #2's "Garbage day!" which had me cracking up.
Jamie King is the lead deputy sheriff in this, but the true star is Malcolm MacDowell. He is...very Malcolm in this. The guy can be really great, but we've all seen him being insanely cheesy as well. And he is in full on gouda here. He gets some terrible lines, and he channels his best David Caruso to deliver them. And it is BRILLIANT. So, so terrible.
The biggest loss is that we lose delving into the killer, and that really made the original movie special. So rarely do we follow the killers, and feel they're justified in what they do, or at worst, understand them. We don't get that here, and the movie is lacking for it. This is more a sign of the times and what people want, than an actual problem with the movie. Each film is a product of their times.
This all adds up to a fun little slasher movie that does its own thing, while not worrying too much about the past, and still giving nods where appropriate. It has its failings, but overall, is a decent enough slasher movie, and is leaps and bounds better than most of the other SNDN franchise.
I definitely recommend it, as I was pleasantly surprised by getting something very entertaining in all the right ways.