Black Christmas (2019)
December 25, 2020 12:39 PM - Subscribe

Hawthorne College is winding down for the holidays, yet one by one, sorority girls are being picked off. Riley Stone (Imogen Poots) a girl dealing with her own trauma, begins to notice and tries to save her friends before they too are picked off.

CW: sexual assault, PTSD from sexual assault.

Streaming in the US on HBO Max. Directed and co-written by Sophia Takal.
posted by DirtyOldTown (4 comments total)
This is an explicitly feminist horror film, made by a woman. But it still leans on sexual assault as the backstory for the final girl in a slasher movie and I'm not sure if really does so deftly enough to get away with it. Content and trigger warnings all around.

The last act, with the women banding together is satisfying, and the different ways the men all end up shitty were well-observed.

It really walks a line between being exploitative and ham-fisted and having enough flashes of satire and empowerment to flirt with cult movie status. I don't want to diminish what Sophia Takal is going for (and sometimes achieves) but it misses the mark enough that I can't recommend it. YMMV.
posted by DirtyOldTown at 12:48 PM on December 25, 2020 [2 favorites]

I honestly wish they had not tried to brand this as a "remake." I love the original Black Christmas and this is not it. If it had tried to make it on it's own as a feminist slasher, I don't think I would recommend it either but I would find it less awful.
posted by miss-lapin at 8:09 PM on December 26, 2020 [1 favorite]

I honestly wish they had not tried to brand this as a "remake."

Indeed. As I have remarked about the previous remake-in-name-only, when doing a remake of the 1974 original — the ur-source of so many tropes of the genre — filmmakers face the choice between being faithful to the source material (and thus making a movie that seems a collection of clichés) or striking out and doing something entirely different (in which case why call it a remake?). It’s like sinking fifty million dollars and several months of many people’s lives into a project you know is going to be a failure, and all you can decide is what kind of failure it will be.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 7:44 AM on December 27, 2020 [1 favorite]

In rare cases, like the Fright Night remake, the writer(s) are able to come up with a very clever re-imagining, which manages to keep some of the key elements. I love both the original and the remake in different ways. However, Marni Noxon, who wrote the remake, had a lot of experience doing that as she also was a writer for Buffy the Vampire Slayer. But such a film is an exception that proves the rule.
posted by miss-lapin at 1:46 PM on December 27, 2020

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