By Cannibal Cam Schwarz
Cam Schwarz here, representing RABIDOG FILMS alongside Mr. Phil Pattison bringing to you all that is horror. We have been sorting through many “b” and other cult films, and have narrowed a few Christmas themed suggestions for The Sound’s December issue. We will be giving some recommendations from our own personal collections on DVD, and the ever so heart warming VHS. But we’ve also mention a few new films that haven’t been released quite yet.
Nothing says holiday spirit like bloodspray and chunkblowing, right? I definitely suggest Silent Night, Deadly Night from ‘84 that made headlines across the world for its shear brutally context of “stalk n’ slash”. Four sequels followed including a modern classic, Silent Night in 2012 from the director of the super gory indie film Automaton Transfusion (Steven C. Miller). Silent Night brought full action and gore, bringing reference to prior films. I also want to mention the ‘72 classic Silent Night, Bloody Night because of it’s “grindhouse” style, as well as its darkness and mood which makes it quite unsettling. Let’s not forget the stylishly colourful ‘72 classic And All Through The House from the Tales From the Crypt anthology with Joan Collins. It gives a psycho feel with the camerawork to really bring you into the insane. Santa’s Slay with Bill Goldberg is a bit goofy but I would suggest that you could probably watch it with the kids.
Whenever the topic of Xmas horror comes up, Black Christmas from ‘74 comes to mind. It was filmed in Toronto containing SCTV actors and fellow Bob Clark. Clark also played in another good holiday horror, Deranged, The Christmas Story that was recently released.
Some recent releases to mention include masterpieces such as the remake of Black Christmas for perfecting the stalk n’ slash genre of horrors. The aerial point-of-view shots and cruel scores make it absolutely terrifying. You are sitting at the edge of your seat in madness!
If you are into ultra-indie films then Campfire Tales from ‘91 has a villian with a Candyman-styled hook ravaging the cretins that fill our towns using an 8mm camear similar to JR Bookwalter’s The Dead Next Door from ‘89. A Christmas Season Massacre from 2001, which was released through Sub Rosa Studios, actually bored me to death. Polonia Brother’s Feeders 2 – Slay Bells really pushes the limits to cable access TV and brings budget to a hole new level.
A notable mention goes to John Russo of Night of the Living Dead and Return of the Living Dead for his sexual Santa Claws which I have nothing further to say about that one.
Don’t Open Till Christmas from ‘84 from the UK has a sort of Prom Night suspense-and-shock style but it is very stylishly done. Both Killer Kills and Black Glove that I own on VHS are what I pull out to watch every holiday season. The Children from 2008 will surely get under your skin. It’s the “they are so innocent yet they get away with it” type of film. If you have have seen the Good Son with Macaulay Culkin or The Orphan, then you know what I’m talking about. It’s that strong feeling of wanting to just reach in there and choke that kid out for being so evil, and having that “punk kid” mentality.
How about the Texas Chainsaw Massacre-styled Calvaire from 2004? Coming out at a time when french films like Irreversible and High Tension were blowing audiences’, Calvaire came in and floored the crowds. I am still waiting to see the stylish Rare Imports: A Christmas Story from 2010 which comes with a neat twist and Oscar worthy camera work. I’m definitely going to check out Krampus which will be coming to theatres soon. I’m sure Phil will be joining me.
Phil and I assure you that these films will definitely get you in the holiday spirit and feeling a bit naughty!