Silent Night, Bloody Night (1972)

silent night bloody night poster 1972 movie
5.0 Overall Score
Story: 5/10
Acting: 5/10
Visuals: 5/10

Precursor to other horror

Sloppy and poorly put together

Movie Info

Movie Name:  Silent Night, Bloody Night

Studio:  Armor Films Inc./Cannon Productions/Jeffrey Konvitz Productions

Genre(s):  Horror/B-Movie

Release Date(s):  November 17, 1972

MPAA Rating:  R

silent night bloody night ingrid astrid heeren murdered

It was a silent night…it was a bloody night!

A mansion in Massachusetts has a dark history when its owner Wilfred Butler (Philip Bruns) dies in a fire.  Twenty years later, his grandson Jeffrey Butler (James Patterson) is about to inherit the property, but the town is trying to take over the property as well.  The land has a secret and someone seems intent on covering up.  As murders begin to occur, the murderer seems to stop at nothing to silence the people of the town…and the reason why could destroy the town.

Directed by Theodore Gershuny, Silent Night, Bloody Night is a horror slasher film.  The low-budget film is in public domain and has been released under the names of Death House and Night of the Dark Full Moon.

I’m always up for a horror Christmas movie, but Silent Night, Bloody Night is more of a standard slasher instead of a holiday slasher.  With a plot that rather confusing and so-so visuals, Silent Night, Bloody Night is rather a dull outing.

silent night bloody night james patterson mary woronov

A mystery is afoot!

The problem with the movie is that it feels like there is potential in the story that is squandered.  With a sordid history for the town and mansion, a cast of interesting players, and a mystery, it is a good set-up.  The movie instead decides to tell it in a confusing way instead of a way to draw you in and the mystery and horror don’t mix well.

The cast is also so-so.  A lot of the cast were players in Andy Warhol’s world including cult star Mary Woronov (who said the filming was poor…which says something coming from her background).  Odine, Candy Darling, Lewis Love, Jack Smith, Susan Rothenberg, Kristeen Steen, and Tally Brown were all involved in the making.  Patrick O’Neal has a bit of a Janet Leigh role in the film, and James Patterson died of cancer before the film was released.  Classic star John Caradine also appeared though he had no real lines.

silent night bloody night grant code ending

Hey…no need to get all gun-y

The movie looks rather cheap as well.  It is poorly shot and once again it doesn’t work well with the plot or storytelling.  The fact the film is in public domain also means that there are varied cuts and quality of the film which often makes it a challenge to watch.

As a precursor to other slasher and horror films, Silent Night, Bloody Night is an interesting movie…but as a movie itself, it isn’t very good.  The plot elements in the film are used in other horror movies and to a better extent.  I could see a retooled, rewritten version of Silent Night, Bloody Night working…but as it stands here, it isn’t very good.

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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