BLACK CHRISTMAS (2006) movie review

Black Christmas (2006) d. Morgan, Glen (USA)

Watching the behind-the-scenes DVD featurette, one almost aches for writer/director Glen Morgan. Here is a filmmaker whose previous directorial effort, the remake of Willard starring Crispin Glover, did not meet with much financial success, and he is obviously feeling the pressure to deliver a crowd-pleaser with plenty of “Boo!” or “Bleahhh!” moments. Seems like a nice guy and a genuine horror fan too, which is why his dead-on-arrival redux of Bob Clark’s cult classic is doubly disappointing.

In trying to do something new with the now well-worn storyline of a sorority house full of potential victims, Morgan goes completely off the rails from the get-go, delivering up convoluted backstories (which fly in the face of the original's trump card of unknowable horror), gore without scares and characters thinner than the anemic script’s pages.

Some people have defended BC ’06 as being a “pretty good '80s slasher,” which to my mind is damnation by faint praise, not to mention the fact that nearly three decades have passed since the ’80s slasher heyday. Sure there are a few cool kills, we see younger versions of rising stars Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Katie Cassidy and Michelle Trachtenberg, while original ’74 cast member Andrea Martin returns as the sorority house mother. But really, what was the point?

Sorry, Glen, but if this is the best you can do and you’re a fan...maybe you ought not be directing. Maybe stick to writing Final Destination movies and producing with Chris "X-Files" Carter.


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