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Reviews & Ratings for
New Year's Evil More at IMDbPro »

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9 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

Tolerable slasher

Author: Justin Stokes from Cleburne, TX
30 October 2010

A rock show host dubbed Blaze gets threatening phone calls during her New Year's Eve gig. The caller informs her that he'll murder a different person each time the clock strikes midnight in one of the four continental U.S. timezones, and odds are that she'll be his final victim.

One of the few slashers to have eluded me over the years, it was nice to finally scratch this off the list. It's far from a top-tier effort in the sub-genre, however. The killer, played by Kip Niven, isn't the least bit threatening. He only dons a mask towards the end of the film, so he doesn't have that to fall back on either. Also, too many scenes of dancing punk rockers and filth masquerading as music for my taste. Now, there are some quality stalk and slash sequences. Most notable is one victim's unpleasant surprise in a garbage dumpster. We also get a hefty helping of cheese, mainly from the killer himself and Blaze's dopey son. The bit with the former dealing with angry bikers at a drive-in is gold.

Overall, I was entertained, but it's not exactly good. Not even close.

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3 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

"Crazy tricks. Must be a full moon."

Author: lost-in-limbo from the Mad Hatter's tea party.
23 July 2011

Cannon's Golan / Globus productions join the low-budget slasher party. Another significant day of the year. Means a psycho going on slaughter spree. But actually the novelty of "New Year's Evil" is cleverly planned out (even with the usual staples, vague descriptions and contrived aspects) as the killer murders someone exactly at the strike of the new year. However this includes the different time zones across the country. When he does it, he calls in to a new wave rock TV special speaking to the hostess and then plays the recording of his female victim's death. This is the same memo, one after another. Because of the set-up, just like many horror outings during the 80s we get plugged by a couple of bands playing their music while we watch fans aimlessly mosh about. It's padding, but at least there's a purpose behind it. Although the constant cutting between the TV special and the killer did make the suspense a bit inconsistent, but still it all boils down to a preposterously intense finale and there's no hiding how compulsively nasty it can be. Watching the killer going about his business is rather amusing in a reckless way, because it never seems to be smooth sailing as he encounters difficulties of some sort in trying to achieve his goal. In all, while smart it does fall on the daft side. The killer stays in plain sight, no hiding behind anything although the film's well disguised twist took me by surprise and the motivation for our killer is rather grey. Maybe something to do along these lines ("Ladies are not very nice people")? Kip Niven is a treat as the sicko known as Evil. It's worthwhile for just his fun twisted performance and those phone calls. Roz Kelly is tolerable, but far from likable as the self-centred TV hostess Blaze and Grant Cramer keeps it unusual as her son. Chris Wallace plays the well-worn cop on the case. Also there's bubbly support by Louisa Moritz and Taaffe O'Connell. Director Emmett Alston's sturdy style keeps a raw edge to it and keeps it moving forward at a good pace, despite the moments of filler. Also the music score leaves a stinging shutter with the bone rattling cues Trashy, but enjoyable oddball slasher offering.

"The show must go on."

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4 out of 6 people found the following review useful:

Goofy cheese ball slasher does have some good moments.

Author: Scott LeBrun (Hey_Sweden) from Canada
31 December 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

It's New Year's Eve, and DJ Blaze Sullivan (Pinky Tuscadero, a.k.a. actress Roz Kelly) is hosting a night long dance party / concert celebrating supposed "new wave" music. Somebody else is celebrating, but in their own macabre way: a dude named EEEE-vil (Kip Niven) is calling Blaze's show and following through on his threat to murder someone every time the clock strikes midnight in a time zone. The clueless cops can't do much to stop him, as he goes through one masquerade after another - pretending to be a doctor, a priest, a business agent - while in the act of slaughtering unfortunate women.

"New Year's Evil" was an early production for producers Menahem Golan and Yoram Globus and their Cannon Group company; written by Leonard Neubauer and directed by Emmett Alston, it's mostly good for the laughs it provides. "Evil" speaks through a voice modulator and it's a hoot when he calls Blaze, remaining deadly serious while his voice sounds so funny. Still, as mentioned, the movie isn't without its moments, such as "Evil" having a surprise in store, inside a dumpster, for a young lady. Also, it's interesting the way the movie focuses so much on its killer, not bothering to obscure his face, and following him just as much as it follows the activities of Blaze. It's a real hoot when "Evil", while in his priest garb, incurs the wrath of some bikers and is forced to abandon his mode of transportation. Also entertaining are the hilarious extras in the dance sequences, busting some of the most lethargic and priceless dance moves one is ever likely to see. In fact, all the extras and bit players in this thing are worthy of chuckles. Adding a creepiness factor is Blaze's odd ball son Derek (Grant Cramer, "Killer Klowns from Outer Space"). Co-starring are Chris Wallace ("Don't Answer the Phone!") as the not terribly efficient police detective, and lovely ladies Louisa Moritz and Taaffe O'Connell as victims; Niven is a standout, giving his all to a killer with a thin, not very convincing motivation; Kelly's character is clearly not meant to be sympathetic, but it would help if she weren't so damn annoying in the part. The music is insidiously catchy, especially that title theme song which we get to hear a couple of times. The finale, however, falls short of being really satisfying, at least in terms of the killer's comeuppance.

Overall, an underwhelming slasher, with limited gore and no nudity, but it is entertaining in spurts.

Five out of 10.

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2 out of 3 people found the following review useful:

Much better than its reputation...

Author: calvinnme from United States
25 December 2014

... and thus I give it a 7/10 rating among its genre, that being the slasher/horror films of the 70's and 80's. This is not a 7/10 when you compare it to an A-List film from the same year such as "Raging Bull". The worst of these slasher films are practically biology lessons as hot to trot teens in some remote location find themselves being bumped off one by one by some unknown lunatic with a literal ax to grind. These films are boring and predictable. That's where this one is different, even with a cast so anonymous you have to wonder why they bothered giving their characters names different from their actual names.

The primary character is a red-headed buxom D.J. who looks north of 30 but MUST be north of 35 since she has a grown son, which she ignores completely and probably has for a long time - she is very self involved, and tonight on New Year's Eve she is supposedly going to get her big break if she can pull off hosting a rock and roll New Year's Eve celebration. It's a phone in show, and at 9PM she get's a phone call telling her that this is EVIL and he has just killed someone close to her and intends to kill someone every hour on the hour until midnight - when he intends to kill her.

At first our self-involved D.J. blows this off as a crank, but when the calls keep coming and bodies start piling up, she and the police become increasingly concerned. You see the killer right from the start as he runs around L.A. killing random strangers in rather novel ways, but the twist in this film is you have no idea who he is and why he has a bone to pick with the D.J. The killer has his own problems along the way, and this film gives you a good idea of just how rough L.A. was even 35 years ago, as the killer runs into some characters who are as bad as he is, and plus there are more of them.

On the dance floor of the New Year's Eve rock show, the dancers are shown moving like mindless zombies among the fog. These guys and gals do not look like Rotarians, so when the police say rather late in the film "I wouldn't be surprised if he walked right up on the dance floor and killed you", I had to wonder - how do you know he isn't already there? There is plenty of suspense right up to the end that still leaves you hanging, and I recommend it if you are a fan of the low budget horror genre. So transport yourself back to not a simpler time, but a different one - when phones still had cords, when there were still drive-in movies, when people still smoked in public places even in California, and when electronic devices were large enough to be shorted out with a screwdriver rather than being controlled by one self-contained microchip.

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3 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

New Year's Evil

Author: Toronto85 from Canada
31 December 2012

A madman vows to murder someone at the stroke of midnight in each time zone in 'New Year's Evil'. Roz Kelly plays a 'Blaze', a famous punk music icon who is hosting a New Years Eve bash at a large hotel. During her television broadcast that night, a callers phones in and says he will kill someone each time the clock strikes midnight around the world. So that means that every hour on the hour, someone is getting killed. This isn't a whodunit slasher film, we know the killer's identity from the start. The movie follows him around as he stalks various women in Los Angeles, making sure he records each murder on a tape recorder. He calls Blaze after each murder and plays the tape leaving her frightened. Eventually, he makes his way to where she is at the hotel leading to a bit of a disappointing ending.

Call me crazy, but I really enjoyed this film. enjoyed it so much so, that it's become a tradition to watch it during the holiday season. I've always loved holiday horror, and 'New year's Evil' delivers. It is full of eighties cheese; the lights, the music, the hair - all of it. And the plot is actually interesting AND original! Having him murder at midnight in each time zone was smart, and it set 'New Year's Evil' a part from other forgettable slashers made at this time. The stalking scenes with the killer was done well too. He disguises himself before each murder, and makes his way around LA to different places (a bar, a drive in movie theatre) to collect his next victim. Some of the scenes with his next victims are pretty tense, and you feel for the women.

Where 'New Year's Evil' fails is with the killer's motive. They give a lame explanation, and I think the whole movie would have been better with a different motive. There is also the sub-plot with Blaze's son, who is clearly deranged. It is never fully explained what is wrong with him. Oh and the ending was sort of disappointing too. But other than that, this is a holiday horror film that all horror fans MUST check out at least once!

Happy New Year! :D


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5 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

"This is Eviiilll!"

Author: Slasher-10 from Niagara Falls, NY"
30 December 2002

This is one of my favorite bad 80's slasher flicks with bad acting and an even worse script. Diane Sullivan, aka Blaze, a television vj hosts a New Year's Eve rock concert. When she isn't working her middle aged, unattractive self onstage, a psycho is calling her everytime he kills someone when New Year's strikes in each US time zone. The director has no desire to hide the killer's face, it's his motive for killing that's the mystery here. If you can't figure out who he really is, you'll be kicking yourself for not figuring it out earlier or because you actually sat through New Year's Evil in its entirety. The average viewer will hate this movie because it is inept, not scary, or bloody or exciting. Lovers of bad 80's slashers can sit back and enjoy this silly horror flick which boasts bad acting, non-believable situations (killer vs. bike gang), and an array of ugly, comical characters (Grant Cramer of Killer Klowns as one of them). If anything, its most redeeming feature is a typical 80's heavy metal theme song that you can rock out to at least three times during the film! (e-mail me if you know where I can find it!)

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Will You Survive for the New Year?

Author: NancyStrode
3 September 2015

New Year's Evil is a film that is quite similar to a lot of slasher films, yet something about it is more entertaining than most. Roz Kelly (Happy Days) stars as the host of a New Year's television program featuring a new wave group. She plays an older woman who is a hit with the younger group. She begins getting phone calls while on the air from a deranged man claiming that he will kill. Cops arrive and beg Kelly's character to talk to the killer on the phone, and get an idea where he will strike.

New Year's Eve is a great little slice of 80s slasher heaven. Kelly gives a great performance given the genre of the film. A highly recommended film, you will enjoy it.

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Waste Of Time

Author: dzizwheel from United States
30 August 2015

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Roz Kelly is totally miscast in this. Like Helen Reddy hosting the "Midnight Special". Think Disco Granny rather than "New Wave" icon. Her character is so unsympathetic one hopes the killer does the audience a favor and succeeds in his evil plan.

Best parts of the movie are the opening scenes of the late 70s early 80s Hollywood Blvd cruising ritual.

After that it's all downhill.

Muddled plot, loose ends. The logistics of doing a murder in each time zone is something not even the most prolific serial killer in history could pull off. Too many plot machinations to allow the viewer to suspend disbelief unless he's on some mind altering substance while viewing.

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Dated, flawed slasher effort

Author: GL84 from Los Angeles, Ca
5 June 2015

While hosting a New Year's Eve show on TV, a hostess tries to stave off a psycho caller's increasingly twisted calls informing her friends are being murdered at midnight in all four time zones until she's the final victim of his slaughter.

Overall this one doesn't have all that much going for it. One of the many problems here is the fact that this one comes off as a bland, boring thriller which just takes so much out of the film. The fact that the premise doesn't really hold up that much is the main element against this one which is the biggest problem against this. By using a series of utterly obnoxious story lines is where that tends to fall as the different story lines really don't make any sense. There's really nothing about the killers' motive that makes any sense as to why that would initiate a slashing rampage of this caliber as the psychotic reasoning is just inane, seems to make even less sense the longer it's presented and tends to hold off plenty of uneventful moments. The fact that the premise isn't really all that spectacular enough is the prime motivator here which requires a lot of excess scenes along the way to hold itself up, some of which is found by it being dragged out indefinitely with a series of endless and utterly innocuous songs that really aren't that great as well as the fact that there's just not a lot of suspense to be wrung out of the film makes this one feel all the more boring. There's hardly any real interesting stalking here as these not only show off the killer's identity from the very start which leaves no mystery about that part of the storyline, the set-ups for the most part aren't that thrilling and the method of being killed with a small knife doesn't inspire loads of fear or provide this with tons of gore. As these are the main scenes here for the majority of the movie, that only hampers this one by keeping its main storyline from being all that interesting and enjoyable. These here do damage the film enough that the few bright spots aren't all that impressive either, starting with the big series of action and stalking in the movie-theater parking lot with the bikers being quite fun for the extended action chasing on display. There's some tense moments woven in as well, while the procedural efforts to contain him result in some rather entertaining efforts. The other area for this one was the stalking and tormenting featured in the finale which managed to get some great times here with the utterly cruel and equally ingenious tactic of wrapping a steel chain around the neck and tying it off to a moving elevator along with the fine stalking of the police against the killer to be found here is about all that works here. Otherwise, there's not a whole lot to get worked up over.

Rated R: Language, Violence and Brief Nudity.

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It's bad, but I love it

Author: Born_ToKill from Canada
24 May 2015

I love this movie. It's a new years eve tradition for me. Now I don't love it in the same sense as say Pulp Fiction, but I love it in a guilty pleasure way. First off, the the acting in this movie is bad, but enjoyable. The main character, Blaze, isn't that much to me. She delivers a tolerable preference, but I could honestly care less about her. The character that I like is EVIIIILLLLLLL. Evil is probably the reason that I like this movie so much. He just is one of the craziest characters ever, and I could tell that the actor, Kip Niven, really enjoyed the part. If the movie had a killer like Michael Myers, it really would suck. The fact that there's an over the top killer with a ridiculous voice makes this movie. Another reason why I like it is because it isn't that clichéd. Of course it has some slasher tropes, but overall it's pretty original. That's not saying that the script is good, but at least they were going for something different. For example, the ending was unlike anything I have ever seen in a horror movie. And the kills were so much different (such as death by marijuana). I also forgot to mention that the soundtrack is freaking great (I honestly would listen to the main theme on my ipod). All of these things make the movie just so awesome. I could watch it any day. So overall, it's not a great movie in my eyes, but it's a fun one, and that's all it takes to get a recommendation out of me.

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