Don't Open Till Christmas - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Don't Open Till Christmas Reviews

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½ September 21, 2016
Not terrible yet not very memorable. Even horror fans are better off avoiding. If anything, the British setting made me wish that this was tried from the angle of either the 'Carry On' gang or Hammer studios. THOSE would have proven much more interesting watches, to be sure.
October 12, 2015
Trashy low budget fun.
December 19, 2014
It reminded me of a Christmas version of The New York Ripper. Only not as stylish, bad editing, more bizarre characters (as if they're not from this planet), and kind of boring at times. There isn't much memorable about this movie, but it has some classic bad movie tropes like dummies falling from high places, terrible acting, bad dialogue, and of course, genital mutilation (which comes across more hilarious in the movie than the words "genital mutilation" ever do).

There's just not much to say about this fairly basic slasher. It started off relatively promising, with a nice long shot from the killer's POV as he stalks a couple in a car. However, after like 50 dead Santas later I was getting tired of the movie. I wouldn't recommend it over Silent Night, Deadly Night as far as slasher Christmas movies, but if you want to look deeper into the well after that movie then Don't Open Till Christmas is worth checking out. If you hated Silent Night, Deadly Night because of the Christmas aspect and you still want to watch Don't Open Till Christmas then you're likely an idiot.
½ May 18, 2014
A fun and twisted holiday-slasher from Britain that differs greatly from the America/Canadian Christmas slashers, Don't Open Till Christmas is funny, brutal, and bizarre. The movie is a real treat for fans of 80s slasher film fans who have seen everything else.
½ May 11, 2014
A middling, oft confusing horror with a few great gore effects.
January 31, 2013
Pretty silly film, though it honestly seemed to make up for the goofy story with a high body count and some truly over the top kills including Santas on fire or even slashed to death in a public toilet!

Worth a look at least once for the ridiculousness of it all, though I have to admit that I've moved it into my normal Christmas rotation.

January 31, 2012
Better than I expected. If you are a slasher fan(like me)its a must see
December 16, 2011
Not the best "christmas horror" movie..not even the best movie period but it is very strange and all over the place.
May 15, 2011
1984 was a tremendous year for Christmas time slashers as we were graced with both "Silent Night, Deadly Night" and to a lesser extent "Don't Open Till Christmas." "Silent Night" shocked the nation with it's portrayal of killer dressed as Santa brutally butchering people. "Don't Open" didn't shock that nation as a killer is brutally butchering people that are dressed as Santa. What the hell? This is from the makers of "Pieces", perhaps the most brutal slasher of all time yet this yule tide slasher didn't even get noticed? Apparently a Santa killer is a NO NO but a killer killing Santas is acceptable. That's just as about two faced as Wal-Mart refusing to carry unedited versions of CDs yet carrying the 3 disc unrated version of "Caligula". In other words it makes no fucking sense!

Another reason that this British slasher didn't get shake the foundations like it's brother in crime as it was released under the radar due to many, many production quandaries. The first major problem is that our director and main star Edmund Purdom left the film half way through due to disagreements with the producers. The rest of the film was finished by the editor and producer. That's three different directors! Due to Purdom being the main star the rest of the film had to be re-written to explain his absence. This of course makes the film an incomprehensible mess of bloody shit.

The plot is simple enough with a killer stalking people dressed as Santa but all the re-writes even makes this simple plot almost impossible to follow. Certain characters that are written in to be major contributors to the plot (like the photographer) just simply disappear with no explanation. Other characters disappear with lame explanations like our main detective (the director that walked off) just simply being suspended off screen no less. Many important scenes that should have been filmed are also left up to our secondary characters to tell the audience what the fuck is going on by boring dialogue.

Other than the mess of a plot, slasher fans that like their films sleazy will get a major Christmas present with this one. This is every bit as sleazy as "Silent Night, Deadly Night" perhaps even more so. Lots and lots of female flesh is present. All the Santa Clause characters are also sleazy drunks with most stumbling around and/or going to porno stores. Trust me all these slobs are human ashtrays and deserve to get offed. They are also incredibly fucking stupid because if there is a killer butcher people dressed as Santas wouldn't you think they would, I don't know, quit their job? FUCK!

The production troubles not only fucked up the plot but also makes the editing look like it was hacked by a psychotic Santa. All the extreme gore sequences look like they were added in as an afterthought in order to compete with other gory slashers at the time. The score also seems like it was recorded before the film was finished as it really doesn't' fit with certain sequences, like dialogue scenes with music more suited for a stalking sequence.

With schlock producer Dick Randall, the man responsible for the unapologetic and guiltily pleasure slasher "Pieces", this should have been just as much a guilty pleasure as its rival "Silent Night, Deadly Night" but thanks to all the production problems we get a pieced together film that has terrible plot flow. Saying this film is a mess is an understatement but it's worth a look for slasher fans that prefer to their films with sleaze and bloody violence.
January 20, 2011
A Dick Randall production which pulls a bit of a bait and switch with Munro, but tries to be somewhat clever and reflexive in playing with her image. It is an interesting contrast with The Last Horror Film and Maniac, and the making-of doc. on Mondo Macabro's dvd of Living Doll confirms that it is pretty much one feature-length piss take.
January 12, 2011
Though the film is fragmented as all hell -- perhaps due to its long, arduous, bizarrely rigorous pre-production history -- I actually enjoy "Don't Open Till Christmas." The characters are all credibly sleazy (rather than the clean-cut, witless, semi-virginal teens we're usually stuck with in slasher flicks), and, unlike "Halloween," plays with common attitudes toward Christmas rather than reinforces them.

You'll find little yuletide joy here: A psychotic murderer is stalking the streets of London, looking for Santas to prey on. Fortunately, every Englishman in a Santa suit is a pervert, a drunk, or both, so their usual haunts are easy to find. Understandably, the killing of Jolly Ol' St. Nick in his many forms probably isn't good PR for London, so Inspector Ian Harris (Edmund Purdom, who also directed -- some of the movie) is on the case, with unreasonable, unseen higher-ups demanding progress at every turn.

No movie has made Christmas more terrifying -- or made you more glad for a quiet holiday at home -- than "Don't Open Till Christmas," except perhaps for "Bad Santa," or Dan Aykroyd's brief appearance as everyone's favorite gift-giving benevolent burglar in "Trading Places."
December 27, 2010

#25: Don't Open Till Christmas (1984)

well, its time for Helliday Horror 2010 to come to an end. The last and final addition is an older slasher from 1984 called 'Don't Open Till Christmas'. I followed the title and did not open or watch this until X-mas. Surprisingly, it wasn't really worth the wait. It's about a serial killer who is killing innocent people who are dressed up as Santa Claus during Christmastime in London.

Overall: It was directed decent and had pretty dark sets, but the movie just really failed in almost every other area. All of the british actors are just way to silly. They very much over act their paper thin roles like they are participating in an academy award winning feature. It really is just silly. The entire film is basically a showcase of tits and stupid acting. There really isn't even any memorable kills. Basically all of the santa's get killed in really dim lit areas making it very hard to see how any of the kills occur. About the only salvagable part of the film is the frantic score. It really does fit well into an early 80s slasher movie like this. The film seems to tangent off several times with stupid dancers and strippers. Making this movie must have just been absolute production hell! The girl lip singing on stage if awful! It feels like some stupid old 'Dexy's Midnight Runners' video or something. What is with the old guy trying to score with the nineteen year old girl?? wtf!? If there are any reasons to be truly glad that Christmas is over, this movie should be the main reason. It really sucked.

Thanks to everyone who participated in '25 Days of Helliday Horror' Mike, Phats, Crystal, Chris, Michelle and Nick. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all.
Super Reviewer
December 25, 2010
This one's a really good time, even if it is painfully predictable at times. Large body count, featuring class gore most of which involving Santa Claus as the victim. This slasher takes the form of a who dunnit, but kind of fails on that front as it's pretty obvious who the killer is from the moment that character is introduced. Didn't affect my enjoyment though as theres something about Santa Claus repeatedly being murdered in grisly fashion that never gets old. Recommended.
December 18, 2010
If you hate Xmas like I do this should get you in the mean spirit of the season. Fans of 80s slasher trash might like this since it's directed by & stars Edmund Purdom (the killer from Pieces.) A high body count is sure to satisfy. 14 dead including 9 Santa. Some of killings had me squealing in glee like a Santa getting his fucking brains blown out, a bladed boot to the groin & a castration while one is taking a piss. Although not on the level of other holiday horror I enjoy like Silent Night Deadly Night & Xmas Evil it is relentless @ times & if you want something on the flip side of It's a Wonderful Life it's not bad. It just goes to show you that you shouldn't give your kid a knife for Xmas. You're just asking for trouble.
October 16, 2010
killer santa and santa's getting killed, right!
½ March 16, 2010
This movie contains some of the best shoddy editing and inept sound production to be found; as an added bonus, you get to see drunken men in Santa suits shot, stabbed, choked, burned, speared, and even castrated. Oh there is a bunch of unnecessary nudity as well; what an achievement!
January 4, 2010
Santa's around Central London are being murdered and Scotland Yard are on the case to stop him before he strikes again. A frankly bonkers flick that is just about bareable simply because it is so daft. It is all too obvious who the killer with the 'smiley' eyes is. Dumb but not much fun.
December 28, 2009
after sorting ot all the xmas bumpf, with everyone in bed on xmas eve. i decided to have 90mins of me time and a beer before the madness of families and xmas took over... well what a treat this was, 80's BRITISH horror, ok its not the best plot in the world, but nice and gorey, strange characters (i love british horrors) and a touch of flesh here and there. this hit the spot perfectly.. shame it seemed to be mastered from vhs as it deserves a better release than this
December 24, 2009
pretty shitty - GREAT VHS box cover though. Maybe i am too rough on this flick as it is pretty damn mean spirited - gotta love walking right up to Santa Claus and shoving a gun barrel in his mouth BOOOOOM!! And there are a few other tasty morsels (killings) as well. Hmmmmmm. Maybe i'll get it another chance someday. The ONE STAR rating stays.....
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