7.2/10
28,446
367 user 243 critic

Black Christmas (1974)

During their Christmas break, a group of sorority girls are stalked by a stranger.

Director:

Bob Clark

Writer:

Roy Moore (screenplay)
Reviews
Popularity
1,827 ( 352)
2 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Olivia Hussey ... Jess
Keir Dullea ... Peter
Margot Kidder ... Barb
John Saxon ... Lt. Ken Fuller
Marian Waldman ... Mrs. Mac
Andrea Martin ... Phyl
James Edmond James Edmond ... Mr. Harrison
Doug McGrath ... Sargeant Nash (as Douglas McGrath)
Art Hindle ... Chris Hayden
Lynne Griffin ... Clare Harrison
Michael Rapport ... Patrick
Leslie Carlson ... Graham (as Les Carlson)
Martha Gibson Martha Gibson ... Mrs. Quaife
John Rutter John Rutter ... Laughing Detective
Robert Warner 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:

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


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Canada

Language:

English

Release Date:

20 December 1974 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Silent Night, Evil Night See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$620,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color (Quinn Labs)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Due to the film's shoestring budget, some of the actors were encouraged to provide some of their own clothes for the film production. 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

Chris: Nash, you stupid son of a bitch; you've got a big goddamn mouth!
See more »

Crazy Credits

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

Alternate Versions

The UK cinema version was cut by the BBFC to remove all instances of the word 'cunt' from the obscene phone calls, together with some of the other crude sexual references during the same scene. The 2003 Tartan DVD release restores all previous cuts. See more »

Connections

References The Fearless Vampire Killers (1967) See more »

Soundtracks

Jingle Bells
by James Pierpont (uncredited)
Jingle Bells and Choral Effects performed by the Counterpoint Singers
Conducted by Paul Feheley
See more »

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User Reviews

Gothic suspense film noir at its best
17 April 2004 | by jeffyoung1See 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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