Blood Lodge Is Quite A Trip…A Ski Trip

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Zombies and snow: two things I try to avoid at all costs. Actually, I even tend to stay away from zombie movies because they’ve gotten too popular. I liked them better when they didn’t have their own hit cable TV show. Snow on the other hand sucks at all times, unless it’s on Christmas or you just have a few days off and you don’t need to get off your couch for any reason. While I try to avoid both of these things, I enjoyed them very much as they merged together in Graffiti Playhouse Productions BLOOD LODGE, a super fun blast of indie horror done Jersey style.

It’s widely known amongst my friends and family that I have absolutely zero interest in skiing. Who wants to be out in the cold weather freezing your ass off? I even hate how the word skiing is spelled because it always feels like I’m spelling it wrong. Why don’t we throw another i in there for good measure? As silly as I think the whole concept is, it does make for a pretty damn cool horror movie backdrop as seen in 2012’s Blood Lodge. BL was produced, co-written, and directed by Jersey born Kevin Orosz.

After hearing about Pembrook and Terror at Ten Acres, I knew I couldn’t miss Blood Lodge. Ever since meeting their crew several Monster Mania’s ago, I’ve been trying to get my hands on some of the Graffiti Playhouse Productions. For some reason they weren’t selling DVD’s of their movies when I ran into them. It all came together when I crossed paths with the accomplished indie filmmaker Orosz on Facebook of all places. I probably bothered them enough about having a screening closer in proximity to me. That hasn’t happened yet, but how about a Graffitti Playhouse Productions marathon at the Loew’s Jersey or the Forum Theatre in Metuchen? C’mon, do it! OK, enough of my chit chat.

What I like about Blood Lodge is that it’s very simple to sink your teeth into it: a group of kids from New Jersey take a trip to a ski lodge in Vermont that’s overrun with zombies. The film isn’t necessarily a scare-me-to-death pulse pounding thriller, but more of a horror-comedy which combines the best of both worlds.

It’s hard to be absolutely original when creating a zombie film, but Orosz incorporates some original elements. Once all the people in the lodge realize the place is surrounded by zombies, there’s a power struggle to see who will become the leader. That sort of thing happens often in zombie movies, but here it comes down to an interesting, ethnically charged twist. The movie also raises the interesting question: would you feed your spouse to zombies if they pissed you off too much?

As with many indie horror films, I usually roll my eyes and count the seconds until they’re over, but not with Blood Lodge. I was surprised at how natural some of the actors were for an indie film. I attribute this to the fact that the cast seemed to have a lot of fun making the film and their enthusiasm was apparent while watching. Considering the crew of players have mostly acted in a handful of indie films, they did a pretty awesome job at helping to bring this story to life. The cast features Michael McFadden, Matthew Imparato, Julie Ann Hamolko, Ed McKeever, and many more. One of my favorites was Steven Buccarelli who made me laugh as the trivia spewing Marty, who was a little bit Jon Lovitz and a little bit Clark Duke.

There’s always a grading curve for indie horror, but I really only had a couple of minor complaints. The first thing that struck me was that I went in not knowing what to expect. The opening credits began to run and showing underneath the credits were posterized still and motion shots of the actual zombies from scenes in the film. I felt like this sort of spoiled the reveal of the zombies when they appear in the film. But as I continued to watch and see that there was a pretty decent amount of humor in the film, I reconsidered and felt that it wasn’t too much of a big deal since the foremost intent wasn’t exactly to scare viewers, but to show viewers what they are in for.

Blood Lodge had a very real vibe going. I’ve watched indie horror movies with a much higher budget that had really awful acting and terrible effects to the point where I just turn it off completely. The effects in this were actually done well for a low budget movie. So, if you’re a fan of indie horror and you like to support New Jersey stuff, try to track down a copy of any one of Graffiti Playhouse’s productions including Blood Lodge on DVD or wait until they show them at nearby theater or horror con and get in on it! Even if you’re like me and would never go on ski trip, you’ll still dig Blood Lodge!

*Blood Lodge was filmed on location in New Jersey, P.A, and Stowe, Vermont.

Christina Ricci Is October’s Garden State Playmate!

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Christina Ricci is October’s Garden State Playmate. She was born in California, but moved to New Jersey with her family. She grew up in Montclair, NJ and starred in plays at a very young age. Ricci has played a wide variety of characters, but it’s the dark ones she’s best known for. I’ll use this month’s column to defend some of her macabre roles in honor of the Halloween countdown.

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Most notably is Ricci’s wicked portrayal of Wednesday Addams in The Addams Family and it’s sequel, Addams Family Values. Coming off the success of those films, Ricci went on to 1995’s Casper. I’m not afraid to admit that I remember seeing this the night it opened with my cousin Danielle. When it came out it had a fairly big buzz surrounding it and the trailers looked awesome. It looked a few steps above a kids movie, but it only turned out to be decent, nothing extraordinary. IMDB reminded me that this was the first feature film with a fully computer animated title character – take that Phantom Menace! Oh yeah…and Ghostbuster Ray Stantz makes a funny cameo in this as well!

1999’s Sleepy Hollow is often criticized for being style over substance. Regardless, this interpretation of The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, one of my favorite short stories by Washington Irving, is hard to beat. To say it’s definitive may not be the opinion of everyone, and I tend to go with the Disney animated version in Ichabod and Mr. Toad, but Christopher Walken was so damn terrifying in this movie! Previously known for her role in The Addams Family movies, this was a great opportunity for Ricci to show off her acting ability while also maintaining the gothic vibe. Directed by Tim Burton, and alongside Johnny Depp, Ricci was perfectly cast.
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10 years after Casper, Ricci starred as Ellie, a girl who’s in love with a werewolf in 2005’s Cursed. This one gets such a bad rap. Surprisingly it’s one of Wes Craven’s later films that is not underwhelming. It took 7 years, but this fun horror film actually has gained a cult following. A film like this is relevant now more than ever thanks to the world’s obsession with the Twilight saga. Cursed beats that any day.

The effects are pretty damn good in Cursed. It was cool to see Derek Mears in an actual werewolf costume. Of course there was a fair share of CGI, but there was an equal amount of practical effects which was welcome. You’ll also see Jesse Eisenberg in an early role. Next time someone accuses him of being a poor man’s Michael Cera, tell them Jesse Eisenberg is an f’n WEREWOLF and he lived in East Brunswick, NJ for 20 years! Scott Baio actually plays himself, a total slimeball actor who tries to hit on Ellie as they discuss his appearance on…get this…The Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn! (seriously)!

OK, so Cursed is dated in some aspects. The songs used in the soundtrack (not the score) are pretty lame by today’s standards and the Craig Kilborn thing is just atrocious. He’s just a dick. Does anyone even know what happened to that guy? He was good on SportsCenter and it pretty much ended there. Back on track though. Finally, the film has numerous scenes inside a club that has a Hollywood wax museum theme to it and lots of classic monster references too! Perfect movie for you and your significant other to enjoy during Halloween! Ricci is the star of the film and although it wasn’t her best performance, I still found myself rooting for her. I’d like to see Ricci get back to doing more films in the horror/thriller genre. What do you think?

Wednesday: “Please end this post…”
Morticia: “What do we say?”
Wednesday: “NOW!”

*I didn’t see 2003’s The Gathering, but if you did let me know how it is!

New Jersey’s Great Pop Culture Moments Vol.69: Alice Sweet Alice

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Alice Sweet Alice is a Jersey horror movie that isn’t afraid to admit it. This independent film was certainly influential to the slasher genre, especially since it was released in 1976. Some horror fans swear by it, while others are luke warm. Either way, Alice has become a cult classic. Rather than go into a long, boring dissertation of the film, I’ve gathered comments on the film from several fellow bloggers on the Internet. After you read those, I’ll give you mine!

The film was a pioneer not because it was Brooke Shields first film, but mostly because of the killer’s creepy as hell mask and raincoat look. Jeff from Dinner with Max Jenke supports this claim: “Slasher icons like Freddy, Jason, Michael Myers, and Leatherface are celebrated for their iconic looks, but to my mind, none of them can hold a candle to the creepy countenance of Alice’s diminutive killer.”

What I loved about Dave Stewart’s review at Bloody Terror was that he pointed out the New Jersey aspect of the film. “In fact, the atmosphere is key to the flick’s effectiveness. Shot in the ’70s and set in the ’60s, Alice Sweet Alice has a terrific feel for its working class New Jersey backdrop.”

Aside from offending devout Catholics, Alice Sweet Alice didn’t leave a huge impression upon it’s release. It’s impact has been felt more in the decades that followed. Captain Cadaver points out at his Happy Horror Blog that Alice was shot in the summer of ’75, way before slasher movies really took off with Halloween in ’78, and goes on to praise the film: “As many shocks as Psycho, as much religious commentary as The Exorcist, with as much atmosphere as The Haunting, there’s no reason why this well written, acted and directed genre masterpiece shouldn’t be listed as a classic right beside all of the aforementioned.”

One aspect of the film that I only found a few bloggers mention is the feeling of being short changed by the resolution. I was let down by the film, but that’s not to say it’s without merit. The majority of horror films feature a swerve, and I was expecting it, even from an early slasher like this one. But I felt unfulfilled. Andre from Horror Digest also had a minor gripe with it as well, and I completely agree with her statement that “…I still think Alice still stabbed the aunt.” You should watch it and decide for yourself! Andre sums it up by saying that the film “…was suspenseful, surprising, and really kept you on edge.”

Being let down by horror movies seemed to be a trend, at least for me as I was growing up. I’d go to the video store and pick horror movies based on whether the VHS cover scared me or not. That turned out not to be such a successful system. Horror Movie a Day brings up a good point about this: “The only thing that really bummed me out was that nothing in the film was as creepy as the film’s poster which used to scare me at the video store as a kid.”

Considering that Psycho is the grandfather of all slasher films, Alice Sweet Alice has got to be looked at as the original niece of the slashers. The issue for many viewers is that we’ve seen so many incarnations of essentially the slasher same film since the ’70s that Alice doesn’t feel as original as it actually is. Perhaps if I saw it back in ’76 it might have been more disturbing. It’s still awesome to see Paterson, NJ in the mid ’70s, especially the scene at Great Falls waterfall. I’ll end with another quote from Jeff at Dinner with Max Jenke – in fact, the same quote he ended his review with – “If you want to know what scary is all about, go ask Alice.” I’ll let you determine that yourself, or you can wait for the remake!

Enhance Your Halloween Viewing With Blinky Productions Horror Prequels

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Blinky Productions features can be seen at their YouTube site!

Living through numerous Halloweens has translated to me holding many solo horror movie marathons. I’m sure some of you can relate. But what should you do when you’ve exhausted all of your movie options? That is a question I’ve pondered for a while now, and I finally share my discovery with you. If you are looking to spice up your Halloween viewing, read on!

You’ve seen all the Nightmares, all the Fridays, and all the Halloweens, right? Well what if there were prequels that you never knew about? What if there were top quality extensions of those franchises to be seen? Based in New Jersey, Blinky Productions fills those voids! In addition to their original productions, they make independent short and feature length films that incorporate the characters we love. Some of their films revolve around superheroes, but many of them star horror icons. Usually their type of output would be considered “fan-film,” but the quality of their films is superior and sets them apart from most of the fan made stuff I’ve seen on YouTube.

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Blinky Productions films have been on my radar for years now, but I never got around to watching some of them until last year. At a New Jersey Batman Convention that I went to, I finally got to meet the man behind Blinky, a friendly movie making mastermind and Jersey guy, Chris Notarile. I picked up a few of their DVDs including one I’ll be reviewing in the future, but for now I’ll tell you about the one that has become a part of my annual Halloween viewing.

I snatched up a great little trilogy of horror shorts to add to my collection. Delving further into the mythos of the Nightmare on Elm Street, Friday the 13th, and Halloween franchises, these shorts make me wonder why these franchises aren’t releasing good quality big budget installments when Chris does it with almost no budget in comparison. What’s great about these films is that you don’t have to lower your expectations before watching them as you do with many independent fan made shorts.

Out of the 3 shorts, the one I felt was the most interesting was KRUEGER: A TALE FROM ELM STREET. The short gives us a front row seat during one of Krueger’s interrogations, before he was “burnt up like a weenie” if I may quote the Fresh Prince. MYERS: RISE OF THE BOOGEYMAN adds a cool little twist to the Halloween lore and I enjoyed it. The only one that fell a little short for me was VOORHEES: BORN ON A FRIDAY. It deals with Mrs. Voorhees tracking down one of the very girls who was responsible for her son’s drowning. You can watch all of them rather quickly which works if you’re planning a mini-marathon. For instance, watching the Krueger short before watching your favorite Nightmare on Elm Street film will enhance your experience!

The Jersey based Blinky Productions’ motto is “High Quality Films…Without the Budget.” In addition to their horror inspired films, they’ve also created shorts featuring The Punisher, Batman, Flash, and Catwoman among so many others. Their original productions are badass as well (i.e METHODIC) so check them out! Up next I’m going to watch FRIDAY THE 31st: MICHAEL VS. JASON!! In the mean time though, go enjoy the wet-dream of horror fan films at their YouTube page, and by that I mean Freddy vs. Jason vs. Leatherface vs. Pinhead and many more!

Blinky Productions Official Website
http://www.blinky-productions.com/

New Jersey’s Great Pop Culture Moments Vol.68: Eerie, Indiana

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“My name is Marshall Teller. Not long ago I was living in New Jersey just across the river from New York City. It was crowded, polluted, and full of crime…I loved it. But my parents wanted a better life for my sister and me, so we moved to a place so wholesome, so squeaky clean, you could only find it on TV. Unfortunately nothing could be further from the truth…”

Fellow horror fans were few and far between when I was a kid. Even in my teenage years I really only had one friend who was into horror like me. And nowadays all it takes is a Google search and you can see that the Internet is literally overrun with horror blogs. It doesn’t get any better than that. But let me go back to when I was a little kid. Those were some important years in the ’80s and ’90s for the genre of horror. On a much different scale, horror was marketed to the kids. There were movies, comics, and TV shows. Horror and Sci-Fi began to merge together to incorporate thrillers, the unexplained, spooky mysteries, and anything remotely…eerie. One of the first shows that successfully blended all this together for young kids in a neat package was Eerie, Indiana.

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“…nobody believes me, but this is the center of weirdness for the entire planet…Eerie, Indiana, my home sweet home…”

Eerie premiered in September of 1991 and I began recording each episode as they aired without even knowing if I would like them or not. I just had a feeling that it exactly my type of show. The pilot turned out to be classic. The plot revolves around our main character Marshall’s (Omri Katz) neighbors, a set of twin boys whose mother preserves them in a type of human Tupperware called Foreverware when they go to sleep at night. It was directed by Jersey guy Joe Dante and it’s in line with all of his other superb genre work. From there, Marshall would investigate all kinds of weird stuff around his town. The show hit home for me since Marshall was constantly comparing his new whacked out hometown to his old neighborhood in New Jersey. Ironically, in the show he uses Jersey as his measuring stick for normal. Obviously we’re far from it!

“Normally I wouldn’t be afraid of pancakes, but back in Jersey, breakfast was always a serve yourself bowl of cereal. Mom had me worried.”

Predating Eerie, Indiana’s premiere by a couple of years, New Jersey had their very own magazine which was basically the same premise as Eerie called Weird NJ. I wonder if the shows producers did a little borrowing? It was quite a few years before the magazine blew up and became world renowned, but local Jersey folks were well aware of its existence. The publishers, Mark and Mark are local icons who eventually branched out into books and their own specials on the History Channel. You might say I was spoiled. Add this reading material into my TV watching routine and you can pick up on what kind of a kid I was and why I related to Marshall.

I had an insatiable appetite for anything I could devour with a creepy tone to it. Eerie, Indiana was my must-see TV for the season that it aired. When I was even younger I would watch Amazing Stories, The Goonies, The ‘Burbs, Monster Squad, The Explorers, The Gate, Haunted Honeymoon, Tomes and Talismans, Twilight Zone, and Tales From The Crypt. On stormy days in the summer my sister and I used to watch the video tape from the Clue video board game. Most times we didn’t even play the game, we just liked the mysterious video. Heck, after Eerie, Indiana was basically dead in the water I even watched Ghost Writer on PBS. That show rocked too. Are You Afraid of the Dark began in the same year as Eerie, Indiana and, a few years later, so did Goosebumps, so it just goes to show that there was a demand for that type of programming.

I would nearly wet myself when the promos would start airing for Shocktober on Channel 11 (WPIX here in the Tri-State area) as Halloween season neared. Friday and Saturday nights were spent staying up late and falling asleep on the recliner after being petrified by Werewolf, Tales from the Darkside, and Freddy’s Nightmares.

As I got older there seemed to be less and less of the types of genre movies and shows that I loved to watch as a kid. I was hooked on Buffy The Vampire Slayer when it first aired. Presently, with shows like True Blood, and Vampire Diaries, I prefer to watch Supernatural and My Babysitter’s a Vampire because they’re not as much adventure/horror as they are a blend of drama and romance. Those shows seem blatantly geared toward women. I’m not looking for comedy, but it’s a special feeling I get when watching the Monster Squad – nobody makes stuff like that anymore. The closest I’ve seen is the animated show Gravity Falls on Disney Channel that seems to be directly influenced by Eerie, Indiana. It’s the combination of fun and spooky adventure that appeals to me. If you were brought up watching Scooby Doo as a kid, you probably watched Eerie, Indiana when you were a little older! I want to see more shows like this, how about you?

Amityville House At Bargain Pricing!

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If you’d like to live in The Amityville Horror house, all you need to do is scrounge up is $955,000 bucks! Your next paycheck will probably cover that price tag, right? An article by Gabriel Falcon at CNN Entertainment explains why this is actually a bargain price right now. It’s quite a drop since last year it was priced at $1.45 million! The house is located in Toms River, NJ and the couple selling the place swears it’s NOT haunted.

The events in The Amityville Horror took place in a house on Long Island, but when production of the 1979 film commenced, the movie company was denied permission to film there. A house in Toms River was then made up to look like the house on Long Island. What that means is the Toms River house is not haunted just as it’s inhabitants claim. Things change though. The couple who live in the house are in the middle of a divorce. Who knows what they’re liable to do to each other if they can’t unload this huge stressor off their back in the form of a legendary facade of horrors. The property is on the river, so it’s easy access for a couple who are at odds to attempt to pull a Norman Bates and drive the other into a watery grave. I doubt it would be the first body dumped in that water!

In addition to the iconic house in Toms River, The Amityville Horror also features scenes filmed in Ocean County, Scotch Plains, and a church in Point Pleasant, NJ. Not bad for a movie about a story that took place on Long Island!

The Barrens: A Direct To DVD Dud?

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A film about a family camping in the Pine Barrens being stalked by The Jersey Devil? I’m in. I’m always in when it comes to that freak J.D!

The Barrens had a nice little buzz going for itself when it was first announced a while back. I’m not sure the path horror films take during their production, but the majority of them nowadays seem to go directly to dvd/blu-ray. I was under the impression that this one would actually get a theatrical release, especially with the nation’s bizarre love affair with everything New Jersey after the popularity of Jersey Shore.

As it turns out, there’s a very limited theatrical release going on, and as Bloody Disgusting reports, a site called TUGG is trying to get it played in more theaters. There’s a showing planned for the AMC/Loews in Cherry Hill, NJ, on 10/18. Read more about the limited release here. For the most part, this one is going straight to home video and V.O.D. It’s not a bad thing for me because then I can experience it for myself without hearing how terrible it might be and I won’t have it spoiled by articles or tweets. As it looks right now though, I won’t have to worry about negative feedback since reviews on IMDB are pretty positive at this point.

Hopefully this film will finally be a proper treatment of the Jersey Devil legend. It’s written and directed by Darren Bousman of the Saw films and Repo! The Genetic Opera so that’s encouraging I suppose. Judging by the early reviews it’s more of a psychological thriller than a true horror film, which appeals to me immensely. I prefer movies like The Shining and Psycho over those full of cheap effects and explicit, in your face gore.

As I mentioned previously here, The Barrens was filmed in Canada rather than in Jersey, most likely to keep production costs down. Such was the case with 2009’s Carny starring Lou Diamond Phillips. If you’re wondering if you should check that movie out, I give you my opinion at this linkThe Barrens stars’ Stephen Moyer of True Blood and Mia Kirshner and hits stores and On Demand on October 9th.

G.I JERSEY: G.I JASON On T-Shirt Tuesday

G.I Jersey - The Sexy Armpit
In today’s post GI Jersey and T-Shirt Tuesday have joined forces to take on one of horror’s most notorious icons who happens to be from…NEW JERSEY!!!

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Some of the coolest, most collectible G.I Joe figures were those who weren’t actually Joe’s at all. For instance there was William “The Refrigerator” Perry, pro wrestler Sgt. Slaughter, and even writer Stephen King’s son had a figure in his likeness code name Sneak Peek to name a few. In this article, The Metal Misfit even revealed that the Italian Stallion Rocky Balboa was slated for his own figure and character on the show as well, but plans fell through when the Rambo toy line was put on shelves. I can’t be sure that there was ever a true villain or monster created in the image of a non-Joe related character before, until now. The Horror T-Shirt masterminds over at Fright Rags decided to bring Jason Voorhees to life on his own T-Shirt in the style of the old GI Joe action figure card backs!
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The REAL AMERICAN SLASHER, Jason Voorhees has never looked cooler. In this era of mash-ups, this is the ultimate ’80s indulgence. When I first saw the tweet from Fright Rags eluding to this t-shirt I lost my mind. Combining GI Joe and one of the greatest horror movie franchises of all time is one of the coolest ideas for a t-shirt I’ve seen in a long time. Not only does the shirt respectfully pay tribute to both properties, but it does it in such a way that if GI Joe was to actually release a Jason figure, this is EXACTLY how the card back would look. Please take note of Jason’s birthplace! That’s right folks, nobody in Jersey cares about Jersey Shore except kids in middle school. Who needs the shore when we have Crystal Lake to boast about! Who cares about the New Jersey budget? Governor Christie should be talking about how proud he is that Jason Voorhees now has his own official G.I Joe file card. This is the important shit, for real.

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If you are spazzing out like I did, don’t worry, the t-shirt is still for sale in limited quantities. Frankly, I’m surprised it didn’t sell out almost immediately, but now the site says there are only certain sizes left so get it while you still can! 

Valentine’s Eve Starring Jason Voorhees?

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Many people say Valentine’s Day is lame and stupid, but they’re mostly single people. Even though it is a pretty hokey holiday (if you want to call it a holiday), I usually just embrace it as I do most other holidays. If you have even the slightest degree of appreciation for your loved ones, I’m sure you’ve scanned the selection of Valentine’s Day cards at the local grocery or convenience store and found a bunch of generic B.S. That’s why I looked to Zazzle this year. It’s where I found one of the coolest Valentine’s Day cards ever.

*Spoiler Alert – I probably should’ve given this to Miss Sexy Armpit last night, but I hadn’t finished writing the message inside of it yet. Maybe she can act surprised when she opens it! This is a perfect V-day card for horror fanatics out there, especially fans of Friday the 13th!  It’s a little late now, but order it for next year and you’ll be prepared. Keep in mind, you won’t find this Happy Valentine’s Eve card in stores. Click over to Zazzle where you can get this card or its graphic on a t-shirt as well.

New Jersey’s Great Pop Culture Moments 62: Christmas Evil

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I hope you’re not planning on asking Santa for a lifetime subscription to Penthouse magazine or you’re in for it. Released the same year as To All a Good Night, Christmas Evil is the true classic of Christmas horror films. If Psycho and Halloween are looked at as pioneering films in the genre, Christmas Evil holds the same honor when it comes to Christmas horror movies. Don’t get me wrong, I still love Silent Night, Deadly Night, but the majority of Christmas Evil was actually filmed right here in New Jersey. Originally released as You Better Watch Out and also known as Terror in Toyland, this largely overlooked horror movie offers dark humor and a creepy, yet yuletide atmosphere.

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Can you dig it? Santa traded in his sleigh for a custom van!

It’s a familiar story, one that has been copied numerous times after the release of both Christmas Evil and To All a Good Night. At the time in 1980, these two films just seemed like cheap throwaway horror film gimmicks, but to many horror film buffs they are classics now.

You can read about Christmas Evil all over the Internet, but the basic gist of it is that on Christmas 1947 little Harry loses his shit and starts cutting himself after witnessing Santa Claus getting naughty with his mother. When Harry realizes it was his father under the Santa suit he grows up wanting to be like the Santa he thought existed. Fast forward to his adult years, Harry has become straight up obsessed with Christmas and becoming Santa. He even keeps a book of all the good and bad kids around town. Dressed as Santa, Harry begins to go on a rampage around town to right all the wrongs he’s witnessed in various ways. The difference about this film and other Santa slashers is that Harry is actually playing a moral judge, he’s just not going around hacking up everyone in his path.

In the horror sub genre of Christmas or Holiday horror films, there aren’t too many that are worth revisiting. Christmas Evil is the type of perennial classic that you can go back to in the same way you re-watch A Christmas Story and How The Grinch Stole Christmas every holiday season. Every time I watch it I wonder why it hasn’t been labelled the quintessential Christmas horror movie yet. Is Silent Night Deadly Night better? I don’t think it is and neither do my fellow bloggers:

“It’s one of my favorite film endings of all time, the absolute perfect end cap to what is a madly magical film.” – Freddy in Space

“…the pedigree of most holiday-themed slasher movies isn’t very high, but Christmas Evil is pretty exceptional.” As perfectly summed up at Marcus’ Movie Life

And while I disagree with his Silent Night Deadly Night sentiment, I tend to agree with Charles Tatum’s Review overall which states that “Christmas Evil belongs just below Gremlins and Black Christmas and well above Elves and the moronic Silent Night Deadly Night when it comes to the unique Christmas horror genre.”

After a little girl says to him “Santa, your shirt’s dirty,” Harry replies “There’s a…a lot of pollution between here and the North Pole.” That sure is true, and although it’s never claimed outright in the film, the story itself takes place in suburban New Jersey. At least from my countless viewings over the years, aside from a couple of glimpses of NJ license plates, Christmas Evil doesn’t mention the state except for thanking Montclair and Glen Ridge in the closing credits.

Also check out Christmas Evil at one of our favorite horror blogs, Kindertrauma!