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Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984)

After his parents are murdered, a tormented teenager goes on a murderous rampage dressed as Santa, due to his stay at an orphanage where he was abused by the Mother Superior.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Lilyan Chauvin ...
Gilmer McCormick ...
Toni Nero ...
...
Britt Leach ...
Nancy Borgenicht ...
H.E.D. Redford ...
Danny Wagner ...
Billy at 8
...
Leo Geter ...
Randy Stumpf ...
Will Hare ...
Tara Buckman ...
Mother (Ellie)
Geoff Hansen ...
Father (Jim) (as Jeff Hansen)
Charles Dierkop ...
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Storyline

After seeing his parents murdered in front of him a young bit spends most of his life in an orphanage where he is abused by the mother superior when he turns into a teenager he gets a job as a department store santa and when he sees two people having sex in the store he gets flashbacks when his parents and when he can't take it anymore he turns into a santa serial killer. Written by devint-16816

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Santa's Here! See more »

Genres:

Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

9 November 1984 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Slayride  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Box Office

Budget:

$1,065,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (uncut) | (video)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Due to the use of the killer Santa theme in earlier films, the producers were not expecting this aspect of the film to be controversial. They were however expecting for the film's portrayal of the Catholic Church to be controversial. Perhaps wanting to play up this angle, the film opened first in the heavily Catholic Midwest and Northeast, rather than the more Protestant West or South. See more »

Goofs

Following the murder of Ellie Chapman (Tara Buckman's character), she is shown one more time before the flash-forward to 1974, during which her heart can be seeing beating against her bare chest; even far more visible is the carotid pulse beating against the stage blood on her neck. See more »

Quotes

Mother Superior: They thought they could do it without being caught. But when we do something naughty, we are always caught. Then, we are punished. Punishment is absolute, punishment is good.
Billy Chapman: Yes, Mother Superior.
Mother Superior: You left your room, William.
Billy Chapman: Yes, Mother Superior.
Mother Superior: Very, very naughty!
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Big Sleaze (2010) See more »

Soundtracks

Sweet Little Baby
Written by Morgan Ames
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A horror movie where the story is the best part. There's a first time for everything...
2 July 2015 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

Silent Night, Deadly Night tells the story of a boy whose parents were killed in front of him as a child, and it was by a man dressed as Santa Claus. Not only that, the man shot the kid's dad in the head and tried to rape his mother before slitting her throat while the boy watched. He hid so he escaped, but the memory remained, even throughout Catholic school where the Mother Superior was strict and violent, saying punishment is good and all naughty children should be punished. Naturally, this messed with the kid's head, so one day when he's finally all grown up, Christmas time comes along at his job and someone has to dress up as Santa Claus. Well, who better than the kid whose parents were killed by Santa to play dress up! He then embraces being Santa Claus, a judgmental fat man who kills naughty people, and that's when the bodies start piling up.

It's a truly dark story. The movie would have been much better had they focused more on the psychological aspect as opposed to it just boiling down to "Santa is a killer. Now I'm Santa. Now I must kill!" It felt like the whole setup was wasted for an anticlimactic, soulless killing spree. Sure, there are some good kills, and there are plenty of boobs in typical '80s B-horror affair, but it failed to make an impact on anything more than a surface level. It's an enjoyable movie, it's simply a matter of greater potential not being realized.

Now this is a horror movie, not an unintentional comedy like its infamous sequel, and it's admittedly effective as one. It's refreshing when a horror movie has an actual narrative you can follow. Worth a watch if you're a horror buff or just want to watch Santa kill topless women for an hour and a half.


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