Black Christmas (2006)

   

Produced, Written & Directed by: Glen Morgan

Starring:

Katie Cassidy .... Kelli Presley
Michelle Trachtenberg .... Melissa
Mary Elizabeth Winstead .... Heather Fitzgerald
Lacey Chabert .... Dana
Kristen Cloke .... Leigh Colvin
Andrea Martin .... Ms. Mac
Crystal Lowe .... Lauren Hannon
Oliver Hudson .... Kyle Autry
Karin Konoval .... Billy's Mother
Dean Friss .... Agnes
Robert Mann .... Billy
Lenz

Release Date:
Quick Theatrical: December 25, 2006

Rating:

 

A group of sorority sisters are celebrating Christmas at their fraternity house for the holidays run by a woman named Ms. Mac (Andrea Martin) as she tries to bring cheer for everyone but some of them are having personal issues.
A psychopath named Billy (Robert Mann) whom once lived in that house has experienced his father being killed by his mother as a child because he was not the child she wanted and then had an inbred sister/daughter named Agnes. Billy kills his mother and eats some of her flesh. Then he plucks Agnes' eye out which all happened in that house. Agnes was sent to an orphanage and there was no news of her presence.
Billy was sent to a psych ward all those years but he manages to escape by killing one of the guards there.
Meanwhile, when the sisters are all getting together they experience harrassing phone calls from the supposed killer Billy threatening them to leave or they will be the next to die.
They call his bluff but then they end up being slaughtered as the killer has made passageways in the house that were built during Billy's childhood days. This killer is watching them and knows how to trap them while a snowstorm is happening finding no escape for the sisters to get help from the police.

 

At first this remake to the 1974 cult hit seemed like a typical slasher with a confused and pointless plot making the film very average but keep watching as it gets much better and more mysterious as things aren't what they seem at all and the story is so different from the original movie too.
Let's see the differences here whether it's good or bad. Well the beginning shows the sorority house with bright Christmas lights in which this seemed to look more cheerful by what's going on at the house unlike in the first movie where it seemed dark and still making everything mysterious. But yet there's the good traditional killing with the first victim going to a closet and then the killer attacking and wrapping a plastic bag around her head but yet it shows more detail on other things this maniac does to this student in which her eye balls get stabbed and poked out and stabbed while the bag is over her head.
But what's different is a maniac who lived at that house is in an asylum showing him there and others discussing him which seems different. It kinda spoils the suspense since in the original no one knew this killer or what his purpose for killing the sorority students.
There's a good camera shot looking up on one of the employees at the asylum walking in the halls in a santitarium handing out meals as well as a good shot looking down on someone dressed as Santa along with discussions between the two od them together which seems a bit unnatural.
There's some good shots and blocking with an employee looking around a room in an asylum as well as bending down to look under a bed with a good approach on Billy Lenz approaching from behind him.
There's cheesy scene's on Kelli Presley and Lauren Hannon banging on people's doors being sarcastic about opening presents in which seemed a bit rough when the scene was trying to be funny.
Then there's the prank phone calls but in today's technology they put on a speaker phone so everyone can listen to it as well as having a call display too since that was never invented back in the original flicks along with discovering that the calls were made by some of the sister's cell phones in which they were the one's that were slayed. Comparing to the first one with this the killer made a call after he killed someone or was murdering someone while making this call so it does pay a bit of a tribute here. Yet the prank calls seem a little corny and nowhere as dark sounding like in the original.
There's a new mysterious moment with an eccentric dweeby sorority sister named Eve Agnew who you can picture everything about her as a nerdy one with the glasses and how she dresses giving another sorority sister named Heather Fiotzgerald a present in which this is of coruse a glass fure of a unicorn. I was thinking "Perfect!" since that was a weapon the killer from the first film killed a drunken sorority sister in the original. Another paid tribute here for sure. She came across as someone who could be a suspect as the killer too by making this scene very mysterious.
Yet there's the first killed victim with the bag over her head in a rocking chair like in the original too since that's what the fans remember quite well and can't leave that moment out. There's good shots looking up and down on the victim on this situation climbing up a ladder to the cellar door and then looking around having an attitude which looked impressive and then a good jumping moment with Billy attacking her which looked strongly done.
I was in suspense when another sorority sister goes up in the attic to find a music box playing and knowing that she is going to be next after checking things out in the attic since that's where the killer is hiding with a dead body.
There's also a terrific jumping moment when another one goes underneath the house to look for something since like the original there was a similar moment and BAM! THe killer is there to greet her as I jumped out of my seat with this too.
My favourite scene's though is the flashback sequences when the sorority headmater named Ms. Mac discusses who once lived in the house which was the killer Billy showing alot of great dysfunctional values with the evil mother not loving her son cause he wasn't what she wanted and him living up in the attic ever since her love affair killed his father off showing terrific dark twisted values. There's a good camera shot close up on this evil mother of Billy's smoking a cigarette as well as a nice shot onthe father rocking a baby cradle. Plus another good close up shot on Billy's Mother taking an ornament and crushing it with a shot on the father looking at her disgusted which was impressively done too.
A nice distance camera shot on Billy's Mother and her new twisted boyfriend fornicating in a hallway of the house near a staircase as well as some good close up shots on her feet walking in a cellar and approaching in front of Billy.
There's a good camera closing in on Ms. Mac speaking darkly about a killer's history in the house as this was very impressive. Also there's more shocking moments like how he had an inbred sister named Agnes.
There's a good camera shot looking up on Billy's Mother and her lover showing evil smiles on their faces with their new baby. Plus a good creepy dialogue between Billy's Mother getting cute towards little Agnes in a twisted way. As well as a nice close up shot on the mother answering a phone while having a cigarette in her mouth.
It also offered tons of horror violence here to please any horror fan who loves sick moments like this as well as moments with graphic sick cannibalism too. It was very interesting seeing the killer's history since it didn't show that at all in the original film.
There's more chilling moments when one of them finds a present from Billy in which you wonder if there's something gross or deadly in the present.
Plus more great moments like people being trapped in the house since there's a snowstorm as well as discovering the killer slaying off someone in a car in which the windshield looked too icy to see everything but blood being splattered as this was a very creative slaying moment too for a slasher film.
A perfect camera shot on the character Dana looking around near the bottom of the house as well as a nice surprise attack by Agnes which is a perfect juming moment.
There's good argumentive discussions with the survivors struggling for safety about the situation with the killer in the hallways of the sorority house which was high paced on what they were all doing.
Great shots of the murderous events and the passageways around the house.
Then suddenly the head sorority sister Kelli Presley going up in the attic with a sibling of the sorority members named Leigh Colvin and finding some shocking moments like dead bodies aound some Xmas displays looking like a grizzly piece of art which looked like a perfect results for a shocking slasher film too plus revealing some twisted secrets on the killers too. There's great struggling moments on the survivors against the killers as it was at a high energy while spotting all of this.
Just when you think things are better after the survivors are in the hospital thinking the killers are dead it's way too easy to think that as the terror still happens which was fun to watch as well. Plus the film had a good ending.
Bottom line is the film is nowhere near as dark or mysterious as the original in which it would be hard to meet up to it at all. However, it is definetely twisted and psychotic but in a fantastic way. Plus in the original flick with a prank call from the killer he mentions the word Billy and using different types of voices on someone horrible happening as the wirters for this decided to be clever by having a historical background on the killer and decided to name him Billy too. I just couldn't keep my eyes off of it when I went to the theatre to see it. By all means check this movie out if you love mysterious slasher films involving sorority chicks. The film has that Scream and When a Stranger Calls feel to his work with the phone threats and the sorority girls reactions to it.

The acting is well performed but not over the top excellent but hey, they did their best in it.
Katie Cassidy
(Kelli Presley) is also good in her role as she portrays the intelligent one of the sorority sisters in which she does this very well along with showing alot of great energy and enthusiasm into the part she portrays. She does a nice job by acting anxious after receiving a prank call as this looked energised. She really brought on a courageous attitude too when she had to fight for her life in certain scene's which shows off well. Heck she can easily be the scream queen Jamie Lee Curtis type of today with what she had to do in it as one of those virgin types of scream queen's like Curtis did in movies like Halloween or even Terror Train. I was surprised to find out that she's the daughter of former 70's bubblegum teen idol David Cassidy.
Crystal Lowe (Lauren Hannon) certainly brought on a nice tough tomboy type of attitude as another sorority sister in which she does well having an aggressive and sarcastic behavior and not taking crap from anyone. Her peroformance with all of this looked greatly done plus had the nice looks to portray this kind of part too. She was one of my favourites in the movie.
It's great to see Andrea Martin (Ms. Mac) back in action again as one of the sorority teachers. I always found her very witty and talented. She does very well performing a serious role this time. She really brings a good light hearted attitude into this role as well as showing good aggressions too when she needed to be this way. Does a good job by backing up near a car after a terrifying incident in the car with a good fearful expression on her face. She was also in the original movie but portraying a sorority sister.
Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Heather Fitzgerald) was someone who stood out fairly well in her supporting role as someone who is intimidated and insecure. She really shows this off very clearly as well as acting anxious by all that's happening especially when she's freaked out after the prank call and backing up and anxiously speaking about all that went on. Shows off a decent amount of energy that's for sure and can portray a great character in this one. I can see her being successful in future shows.
Kristen Cloke (Leigh Colvin) looked incredibly sharp with her performance showing a great aggressive and serious no bullshit attitude with what she had to do in her role and making her moments incredibly adventureous. She makes a good appearance introducing herself and being serious about a situation making herself look powerfully spoken while she was doing this all. She was one of the best actresses in this flick. Plus she does well crying in a scene as she can really be believeably emotional with whatever she had to do. Shows a good shocked expression and ready to scream after spotting a dead body in a scene as this looked pretty powerful. Very much resembles Dynasty former TV star Pamela Sue Martin.
Oliver Hudson (Kyle Autry) was fairly average in his part as a possible suspect to all the killings in which he tried his best to show off some energy in his role by acting anxious and aggressive in certain spots but yet he needed more improvement with what he did in the film. He wasn't terrible though and can improve more with future acting experiences in projects.
The most intimidating performance of them all was supporting actress Karin Konova (Billy's Mother) by behaving very disturbed, evil and bitter with her actions. She shows great nasty expressions and an icy messed up tone in her wicked speech. Basically she was what you picture in someone who is negative and incredibly dysfunctional and has the perfect evil wicked looks to add as a plus to her character. She does a great job screaming intensely when the terror strikes her. I give her a two thumbs up as she knows how to be disturbing in her part.
Dean Friss (Agnes) plays a woman in this film as Billy's psytcho sister and boy was he ever convincing as someone who is deranged and perfectly inbred with how he speaks in which he has a perfect deepness to his speaking and believeably deadly and menacing acting towards others. He was a great killer and making himself somewhat okay by acting scary too. Does a great job creeping up towards someone in an attic and speaking freaky like as well as a good dark expression on his face.

A bit of Konoval's breast is briefly shown while her character is fornicating with her lover on a staircase.
A sorority sister is taking a shower and her butt and a side of her breast is partially shown.

Ooh yeah we have plenty of intense horror violence.
Eyeballs are stabbed out and some are eaten
Face is sliced off
Heads are stabbed
Decapitations
Cannibalism
Body parts are hung on a tree
The killer is stabbed with a sharp object on a tree and his guts are revealed
Lots of blood and lots more gore too.

The late Shirley Walker composed music for this film and passed away shortly before the films release.
She did a wonderful job for it giving it the right horror chemistry in a Christmas film and using perfect Christmas music during the intense and disturbing scenes in the film showing that happy music can be deadly too. There's perfect intense high pitched violin orchestra as well as having some deep moments used in it too when a terror is about to happen.

Hospital Santa: [Noticing a padlock on Billy's cell door] A Padlock?
Security Guard J.Bailey: His mine used one when she kept him in the attic... it helps him feel at home, especially at Christmas, every year around this time he tries to escape

Megan Helms: Fuck Christmas. Just fuck it.

Kelli Presely: [phone rings] Alpha Kappa... hello? Hello, hello? Very funny, Kyle.
Kelli Presely: I think someone's in trouble.
[turns receiver onto speaker phone]
Billy Lenz: [on the telephone, in a muffled, maniacal voice] Where is Agnes? Billy! What your mother and I must know is where is Agnes? Merry Christmas, Agnes. You are in my house, I can see you. Everyone should be home for Christmas! Santa Claus is dead.
Lauren Hanon: Hey, shouldn't you get goin', don't you have lots of toys to deliver to good little boys and girls?
Billy Lenz: I'm gonna kill you.

[after receiving a disturbing anonymous phone call]
Lauren Hanon: What do you know about dealing with anyone but your Nascar daddy?
Heather: I'm goin' home.
Lauren Hanon: Go on, run home to daddy!
Heather: At least my family wants me home.

Ms. Barbara MacHenry: [Searching for Billy's present under the christmas tree] Billy! Billy! Girls, I can't find Billy's present under the tree here. Come on, girls, we can't start the secret santa without Billy's present! Hello? Who drew Billy's name?
Melissa Kitt: Um, Ms. Mac, it's a secret santa.
Dana Mathis: [Doing her nails] Can we just get on with this thing? So I can party for a few days before having to deal with the family on Christmas.
Melissa Kitt: Have you looked outside? It's raining hail the size of Yao's ballsack!
Dana Mathis: It'll stop. The party gods wouldn't allow me to be here alone during Christmas break.
Kelli Presely: Oh, I'll be here, Dana.
[Disapointed]
Kelli Presely: Yeah, they're makin' me work next week.
Melissa Kitt: That sucks, everyone should be home for Christmas.
Ms. Barbara MacHenry: All right, all right, who's not here?
Kelli Presely: Um, like everybody.
Ms. Barbara MacHenry: Chelsea?
Kelli Presely: She went home this morning.

[phone begins ringing, and everyone goes silent and looks at each other]
Melissa Kitt: I got it.
[caller identification reads Megan Helms]
Melissa Kitt: Why is Megan calling here?
[answers the phone]
Melissa Kitt: Hey, where are you?
Billy Lenz: [again, in a muffled and maniacal voice] She's my family now. Everyone should be home for Christmas! I'll be home for Christmas, and I'm going to bury the hatchet in your head.
[Melissa quickly hangs up]
Melissa Kitt: That was not Megan...

Heather Lee: I'm really not okay with any of this. I mean, buying a Christmas present for a serial killer?
Melissa Kitt: No. You see, serial killers murder repeatedly for sexual thrill. Billy Lenz was a spree killer - dude just fucking lost it.

Melissa Kitt: I'm sorry, but that-that fuckin' voice, that was not Megan or Kyle. That was the fucking devil, and he was not talking to us, he was talking to Billy.

Melissa Kitt: Have you looked outside? It's raining hail the size of Yao's ball sack.

Kelli Presely: [phone rings] Alpha Kappa... hello? Hello, hello? Very funny, Kyle.
Kelli Presely: I think someone's in trouble.
[turns receiver onto speaker phone]
Billy Lenz: [on the telephone, in a muffled, maniacal voice] Where is Agnes? Billy! What your mother and I must know is where is Agnes? Merry Christmas, Agnes. You are in my house, I can see you. Everyone should be home for Christmas! Santa Claus is dead.
Lauren Hanon: Hey, shouldn't you get goin', don't you have lots of toys to deliver to good little boys and girls?
Billy Lenz: I'm gonna kill you.

[Billy and his dad were sitting infront of the Christmas tree setting out cookies and milk for Santa Claus]
Mrs. Lenz: Santa's not coming for you. He was shot down by the Russians. Santa Claus... Is dead!
[Billy turns around giving his mother a nasty look while his father begins to whisper in his ear]
Mr. Lenz: [whispering] Don't listen to her, Billy. There's a surprise upstairs waiting for you in your room. Go on up there.
[Billy quickly jumps up and runs up the stairs to his bedroom]

Mrs. Lenz: [hands her gift] Merry Christmas, Agnes.
Agnes - Age 8: [loud noises come from upstairs] Is that Santa's reindeer?
Mrs. Lenz: There's nothing up there. Now, do you want a Christmas cookie? You're my cookie, and I could gobble you up!

[Mrs. Lenz walks into the kitchen to make Agnes some Christmas cookies. Before starting, she turns on the stove and lights up a cigarette. Right after she lit the cigarette, the phone rang]
Mrs. Lenz: [answers the phone] Hello? Merry Christmas.
Mrs. Lenz: [There's no answer so she repeats] Merry Christmas.
Mrs. Lenz: [Again no answer] Hey! Merry Christmas!
Billy Lenz: She's my family now.

Agnes: Everyone will be home for Christmas

Billy Lenz: [Over the phone] Agnes is MY FAMILY NOW

Kelli Presely: They're not your family... and your brother's not here
Agnes Lenz: No... MY DADDY IS
[Her brother and father bursts through the floorboards behind them]

Agnes: [Indicating to all the corpses in the attic] They're my family now.