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I thought I'd kick the new year off with another movie marathon. I thought it was time to check out a few old school mystery flicks. Som...

Monday, December 18, 2023

Silent Night, Deadly Night part 2 (1987)

This is a sequel to a movie that I rather like. You can check my review for the original Silent Night, Deadly Night here. This movie also has it’s fans, which my review is likely going to piss off! I suppose that is a spoiler, but I feel like my criticisms aren’t going to be covering any new ground. But in case you haven’t seen this one before I might as well start with a plot synopsis… what there is of it anyway.

The killer from the original movie was named Billy. In that movie we see that he had a younger brother named Ricky. Both of them end up in a Catholic orphanage after their parents are killed by a criminal dressed as Santa Claus. He also attempts to rape the mother in front of Billy before slitting her throat. Years later when they are older and Billy has turned eighteen he gets a job at a toy store and gets put in a Santa suit. When told to do what Santa does… well you can figure it out. He starts killing anyone who is naughty and after a while pretty much anyone who gets in his way.

Now you might be asking yourself, “Why are you recapping the plot to an entirely different movie in a review for the sequel?” That is an excellent question that I’m about to answer. Most of the plot to Silent Night, Deadly Night part 2 is told by Ricky to a psychiatrist after he has been arrested for going on his own homicidal rampage. So basically, we get a ton of flashbacks. In fact, the first forty minutes of this eighty eight minute long movie is just the best parts of the original cut in as his memories. Half of this sequel is recycled footage! You know I’d much rather be watching that movie than this one.

When we finally do get to the original material it is also told in flashback form. That means we get random bits with characters getting introduced to either die or date Ricky and then die. He meets an abusive boyfriend and runs him over with a jeep. Then there is a loan shark who he stabs with an umbrella. Finally he meets a pretty woman named Jennifer and they do some grown up hugging. After that she gets really annoyed at him when he murders her ex-boyfriend with a battery charger. So he strangles her with an antenna from a car. When a security guard shows up he takes his gun and shoots people until he runs out of ammo and is arrested.

Yeah got it... Garbage Day.
Though they apparently didn’t have enough new material so there is another couple random kills after he breaks out of the mental hospital where he was being interviewed. Somehow, again zero narrative in this flick just random scenes strung together, he ends up attacking the nun from the first movie who is clearly not played by the same actress we just saw in the extended flashbacks.

This is just a miserable movie to sit thru. There is zero attempts at story or character. As I’ve already stated half of this movie are the highlights from the original. When they get to the new stuff it plays like someone was making it up as they went. It gets awfully tedious watching characters appear form nowhere to die, rinse and repeat. There isn’t even a story here. None of this is helped by the fact that actor Eric Freeman is required to carry the movie. I have no idea what he was thinking but his performance is one of the worst that I’ve ever seen. He has said in interviews that he had conflicting direction about how he was supposed to portray Ricky, so I’ll give him the benefit of the doubt. But this is just terrible.

The Kills are lame.
I suppose being a slasher movie I need to talk about the kills. Just to be clear I’m ignoring all the gore from the flashback scenes. These filmmakers had nothing to do with that and I refuse to give them credit for it. Ricky is responsible for eleven deaths. Most of them are offscreen or the result of his shooting spree. These are completely uninspired and mundane, like the rest of the movie. There is a fun gag with an umbrella and the last kill has a head rolling. I mean neither are particularly great but by comparison with the rest of this mess they stand out.

If you are a fan of this movie cool. I myself also reference the legendary and badly delivered “Garbage Day” line ever Thursday night when I take out the trash. The lovely Mrs. Crappy Movie Reviews gets a kick out of it. Okay that was a lie. It annoys her much like this Silent Night, Deadly Night part 2 annoys me. This one should have been binned and taken out many garbage days ago. You want to watch something cool go watch the original. That is a bit of festive fun for the whole family!


© Copyright John Shatzer 2023

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