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Black Christmas (1974)

R  |   |  Horror, Mystery, Thriller  |  20 December 1974 (USA)
7.2
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 19,479 users  
Reviews: 334 user | 192 critic

A sorority house is terrorized by a stranger who makes frightening phone calls and then murders the sorority sisters during Christmas break.

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Title: Black Christmas (1974)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Peter
...
...
Marian Waldman ...
...
Phyl
James Edmond ...
...
Sargeant Nash (as Douglas McGrath)
...
...
Michael Rapport ...
Patrick
Leslie Carlson ...
Graham (as Les Carlson)
Martha Gibson ...
Mrs. Quaife
John Rutter ...
Laughing Detective
Robert Warner ...
Doctor
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Storyline

It's time for Christmas break, and the sorority sisters make plans for the holiday, but the strange anonymous phone calls are beginning to put them on edge. When Clare disappears, they contact the police, who don't express much concern. Meanwhile Jess is planning to get an abortion, but boyfriend Peter is very much against it. The police finally begin to get concerned when a 13-year-old girl is found dead in the park. They set up a wiretap to the sorority house, but will they be in time to prevent a sorority girl attrition problem? Written by Ed Sutton <esutton@mindspring.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Twas the Night, Before Christmas, and All Through the House, a Creature was stirring. The Stockings were Hung by the Chimney with care, but it was Hard to Say that St. Nick would be there. A Christmas of another Colour, brings a Killer on the Loose. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

20 December 1974 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Black Christmas  »

Box Office

Budget:

CAD 686,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The role of Lieutenant Fuller was originally supposed to be played by Edmond O'Brien, but due to failing health from Alzheimer's he had to be replaced. John Saxon (who was originally considered for the role) was brought in at the last minute when a space in his schedule opened up. See more »

Goofs

Before the phone call from Barb's mother, her shirt goes from 3 buttons undone, then after the call, it has one button undone and then 3 buttons undone for the next scene. See more »

Quotes

Mrs. MacHenry: [singing as she packs her suitcase] Alligators come through the gate, but goodbye leg if ya get away late! Lollies love to pop!
See more »

Crazy Credits

A telephone is continously ringing throughout the final credits. See more »

Connections

Remade as Black Christmas (2006) See more »

Soundtracks

O Come All Ye Faithful
St. Simon's Choir
Edgar Hanson-Choirmaster
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Lovers of John Carpenter's Halloween will love this film even more.
17 April 2000 | by See all my reviews

When I rented this film around the Christmas season of 1999, I did not know what to expect. The only reason why I rented it was that Olivia Hussey and Keir Dullea were in the leading roles (I have a strange and sick obsession with Olivia Hussey and I liked Keir Dullea in 2001). But then when I first watched it that dark and cold Saturday night, I was amazed.

The film's style was very dark and mysterious, as well as bizarre. While watching the film, I saw where John Carpenter might have gotten a lot of his filming technique from his 1978 classic, Halloween (one of my personal favorites). It, like Halloween, involves the murders of young women. And in the case of Black Christmas, it's sorority girls.

What set this apart from Halloween is that the killer is less human than Michael Myers. You saw Michael Myers, but you do not see the killer in Black Christmas. Plus the killer is insane, especially when he rants. His rants make no sense, making his intentions unknown. He just kills, not for revenge like most horror films. But he just kills. I don't know about you, but that is what makes this film even scarier, aside from the spooky musical score.

They say that Jamie Lee Curtis is the "scream queen." Well whoever thinks that obviously has not heard Olivia Hussey's lungs in action. That woman can SCREAM.

It's best if you watch this film alone in a quiet house at night during the Christmas season. I did that the second time I watched it. I tell you the truth, I had a hard time walking downstairs to go to the bathroom I was so scared. And no horror film has ever done that to me since the first time I saw Scream about three years ago.

Some may argue that the characters in the film are not very developed, but that does not matter because most of them die anyway. One of the few characters that stood out in this film was Barb (Margot Kidder). She is a drunk, trash-talking sorority girl who manages offend just about everybody. The woman who played the sorority house mother, Mrs. Mac (Marion Waldman), also stood out as a trash-talking, drunken woman. Olivia Hussey's character is a bit snobbish, like any sorority girl, but not to her other sisters. Keir Dullea's character is high-strung and unpredictable, which adds to the film mysterious style. But as for the rest, there really was no room for them to grow. Besides, like I just stated, most of them get killed off anyway.

The end really surprised me. I mean, really. No questions asked. It even shocked me, but I'm going to spoil it for anyone. But if you loved John Carpenter's Halloween, you'll love this film even more. I guarantee it.


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IMO The Ambiguous Ending Adds to This Movie's Cult Status ret_cpo
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Jess was horrible horneddemon
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