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Black Christmas (1974)

7.2
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Ratings: 7.2/10 from 18,110 users  
Reviews: 327 user | 188 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)
...
Chris
...
Michael Rapport ...
Patrick
Leslie Carlson ...
Graham (as Les Carlson)
Martha Gibson ...
Mrs. Quaife
John Rutter ...
Laughing Detective
Robert Warner ...
Doctor
Edit

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:

Christmas is coming early this year. And it's murder. 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

Cinematographer Albert J. Dunk created Billy's POV shots by rigging up a camera harness that would mount the camera on his shoulder as he walked about the house and climbed the trellis and attic ladder himself. See more »

Goofs

About seven minutes into the film, when "the moaner" calls, you can very clearly see the boom mic at the top of the frame as everyone gathers around the phone to listen. See more »

Quotes

[after the mysterious caller hangs up]
Clare Harrison: I really don't think you should provoke somebody like that, Barb.
Barb Coard: Oh listen, this guy is minor league. In the city, I get two of those a day.
Clare Harrison: Well maybe. But you know that town girl was raped a couple of weeks ago.
Barb Coard: Darling, you can't rape a townie.
See more »

Crazy Credits

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

Connections

Spoofed in Student Bodies (1981) See more »

Soundtracks

Silent Night
(uncredited)
Music by Franz Xaver Gruber
Lyrics by Joseph Mohr (1818)
Heard during opening credits
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

Gothic suspense film noir at its best
17 April 2004 | by (Los Angeles, California) – See all my reviews

"Black Christmas" is truly a forgotten gem. Even though the producers intended the film for cinema, "Black Christmas" has the look and feel of its precursors, the made-for-television gothic suspense thrillers between 1969 and early 1974. This four year period featured inexpensively-produced but having hi-quality production values that older viewers will remember. These include, "A Howling In the Woods", "When Michael Calls", "How Awful About Allen", "Don't Be Afraid of the Dark", "Home for the Holidays", et al. "Black Christmas", produced at the tail-end of this short-lived genre, clearly displays the same suspenseful and moodily atmospheric elements involving human angst, fears, anxieties, and complicated, sometimes destructive relationships. In one small aspect, "Black Christmas" is a transitional film set between the television gothic supsense thrillers and the onset of the slasher genre epitomized by 1978's "Halloween" and 1979's "Friday the 13th". The violence was certainly more graphic than its television precursors, but not gratuitous. Foul language sprinkled throughout "Black Christmas" would never have made it past the television censors. And look again at "Halloween". It's reliance on atmosphere, moodiness, suspense, and the fright of awaiting something that is surely around the next dark bend of the house harkens back to the early 70s gothic thrillers. "Black Christmas" is from a unique genre long gone and will probably not return, but for those seeking quality shockers without the schlock will no doubt find repeat viewings of this suspense film noir satisfying.


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Jess was horrible horneddemon
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FUN LITTLE THRILLER...BUT NOT 'HALLOWEEN!!' BogieandBacallfan
could Peter have helped the killer? ricky-may1
An actual family now lives in the 'Black Christmas' house jonathanstatsny
Lets Get This a Criterion Release ML1125
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