SILENT NIGHT, EVIL NIGHT
Black Christmas interestingly prefigures the slasher film. It sets up the mystery man stalking nubile co-eds theme that was made into a formula a few years later by Halloween (1978) and Friday the 13th (1980). Black Christmas has developed a small cult but has never been recognised in any major way as the progenitor it is. In fact, it does a good job of working the formula a considerably better one than Friday the 13th and imitators. There is a particularly effective ending where the person shot as the killer is revealed to be the wrong one and the film fades out with someone else still waiting in the house.
Characterisation is also far better than in most slasher films. Bob Clark has a considerable sense of humour. Margot Kidder, a few years before becoming Lois Lane in Superman (1978), is positively hilarious convincing cops that the schools exchange code is Fellatio, giving hilarious little speeches about turtles that screw for two days, and in one shot feeding alcohol to children. The film was sold with the great tagline If this movie doesnt make your skin crawl, its on too tight.
Like Halloween, Friday the 13th et al, Black Christmas takes place on a holiday. In fact, this was the first slasher film to be set around the Christmas date and would be followed by the likes of To All a Goodnight (1980) (which borrowed the same basic setting of the girls dormitory used here), Christmas Evil/You Better Watch Out (1980), Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984) and sequels, Santa Claws (1996), Psycho Santa (2003), Black Christmas (2006), Deadly Little Christmas (2009), Silent Night (2012), All Through the House (2015) and Good Tidings (2016).
The film was later remade as a more generic slasher film Black Christmas (2006).
Full film available online here:-