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Black Christmas


Stars: Kate Cassidy, Kristen Cloke, Michelle Trachtenberg, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Crystal Lowe, Lacey Chabert, Jessica Harmon

Director: Glen Morgan

A much, much gorier version of a minor horror classic that achieved its scares mainly with shape and shadow. Ironically, the original's recently been re-classified as 18, whereas this gorefest is only a 15! At any rate, several of Hollywood's foxiest young actresses scream their heads off (some literally), as they find themselves trapped by a maniac killer in the same house that 15 years earlier saw an insane young man murder the slovenly family that left him in its attic.

At the start of the new movie, we see him escape from the asylum. But is he the one suffocating our sorority sisters in plastic bags and removing their eyes and entrails?

You'll probably lose track as the body count nears double figures, but wild, swirling music by Shirley Walker helps things along - even if there aren't too many jumpy moments.

The girls sensibly say they have to stay together but, of course, they don't and, in a finale even more ridiculous than the rest, the killer swaps his/her body for another and comes back from the dead. What a surprise.

It could be worth sitting through the credits, though, to see the composer Tchaikowsky's Christian name spelt three different ways. You just can't get the end-credit checkers these days,

David Quinlan

USA 2006. UK Distributor: Pathé. Colour by Kodak.
84 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: 15.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 1, Violence/Horror 3, Drugs 1, Swearing 2.

Review date: 11 Dec 2006