5.6/10
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Christmas Evil (1980)

You Better Watch Out (original title)
A toy factory worker, mentally scarred as a child upon learning Santa Claus is not real, suffers a nervous breakdown after being belittled at work, and embarks on a Yuletide killing spree.

Director:

Lewis Jackson

Writer:

Lewis Jackson
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Brandon Maggart ... Harry Stadling
Jeffrey DeMunn ... Philip Stadling
Dianne Hull ... Jackie Stadling
Andy Fenwick ... Dennis Stadling
Brian Neville Brian Neville ... Marc Stadling
Joe Jamrog Joe Jamrog ... Frank Stoller
Wally Moran Wally Moran ... Philip Stadling Jr.
Gus Salud ... Harry Stadling Jr.
Ellen McElduff ... Harry's Mother
Brian Hartigan ... Harry's Father
Peter Neuman Peter Neuman ... Moss Garcia
Lance Holcomb ... Scotty Goodrich
Elizabeth Ridge Elizabeth Ridge ... Susie Lovett
Chris Browning Chris Browning ... Richie Sharp
Tyrone Holmes Tyrone Holmes ... Frankie
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Storyline

Widely recognized as the best of the Christmas horror efforts, Christmas Evil is the story of a boy who loves Christmas. He is scarred as a boy when he learns that Santa is not real. Throughout the rest of his life, the toy-maker tries to make the Christmas spirit a reality. He becomes obsessed with the behavior of children and the quality of the toys he makes. When he is met with hypocrisy and cynicism, the resulting snap causes him to go on a yuletide killing spree to complete this dark comedic horror. Written by Jason Duvall <jasduv@edge.net>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Who's been naughty? See more »

Genres:

Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Among the actors and actresses who auditioned for roles in this film are Richard Bright and George Dzundza for Harry, Michael Beck, Larry Pine, and David Rasche for Philip, and Carla Borelli, Patricia Hodges, Glenn Close, JoBeth Williams, and Lindsay Crouse as Philip's wife Jackie, and Ellen McElduff, who plays Harry's mother, also read for the role of Jackie. See more »

Goofs

When Harry's brother falls down the hill, it's obviously a fake sheet of snow as it all lifts off the ground. See more »

Quotes

Harry "Santa": But now I want you to remember to stay good boys & girls. Respect your mothers & fathers and do what they tell you. Obey your teachers and learn a whooooole lot! Now *if you do this*, I'll make sure you get good presents from me eeeevery year. Ha ha ha... but if you're bad boys & girls, your name goes in the 'Bad Boys & Girls' book, and I'll bring you something... horrible.
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Crazy Credits

While it is understandable that viewers might identify the rousing "Merry Christmas everybody!" at the end of the credits as the crew adding a personalized touch to the final moments of the film, it is in fact the greeting that ends the Jackson Trio's "Jingle Bell Hop" that is used during the end credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

A deleted scene toward the film's beginning showed Harry being promoted in his job. Brandon Maggart had a hangover from the day before while shooting the dancing scene, and can be seen becoming dizzy and nauseous at the end of the scene. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Video Nasties: Draconian Days (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Deck the Halls
(uncredited)
Traditional tune, lyrics by Thomas Oliphant
Hummed by Brandon Maggart
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User Reviews

Strangely moving
22 September 2002 | by anselm11See all my reviews

This is a strange film. It has good acting, yet bad editing. One longs to fast forward it; it could use some cutting--yet, by the time it's over, one is curiously moved. The anti-hero is strangly moving; he is not your usual B-film slasher. He has a genuine, though insane in a world like ours, moral sense. The ending makes it more like a dark fairy tale. I did not enjoy watching it; yet, when it was over, I remember it fondly. It was really trying something different. Its shifts of tone may be its problem; yet it is a worthy effort.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

November 1980 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Christmas Evil See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$850,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (re-release)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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