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Parents' Guide to

Black Christmas

By Jeffrey Anderson, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 14+

Haywire holiday horror remake takes a feminist position.

Movie PG-13 2019 98 minutes
Black Christmas Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 15+

Based on 10 parent reviews

age 14+

I liked it

I think it was a pretty good movie besides the tons of swearing. It’s pretty violent and disturbing at times but it doesn’t go too far. There’s words like “sh*t” and “b*tch” and teens put in DivaCups and almost have sex. If you’re not scared easily, and you can handle some violence/swearing, you should watch it.

This title has:

Too much violence
Too much sex
Too much swearing
age 10+

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (10 ):
Kids say (16 ):

Having little to do with either the 1974 classic or the very poor 2006 remake, this holiday horror reboot is a strong attempt at a feminist statement that often goes either haywire or not far enough. Black Christmas, like its predecessors, is set in a sorority house at Christmastime, and there are brutal killings, but that's all these movies have in common. (The earlier two were more traditional "slasher" films.) At first, the new movie raises interesting discussions about how some classes are largely taught based on the writings of White men, without much diversity. The characters even argue about it, with interesting takes.

Directed and co-written by Sophia Takal, the movie also spends a little time getting to know its characters, establishing their friendships and relationships in natural ways and using the holiday atmosphere to interesting effect. But as a horror movie, Black Christmas is pretty bland; the killings aren't scary, and they don't have much emotional impact. As soon as their friends die, the other characters seem to simply forget about them. Then, the final showdown contains an evil plot so ludicrous that it largely negates all the arguments the movie was trying to make. The original 1974 version is still the best: smart, scary, and atmospheric, with strong characters and performances. This one gets points for trying, but it doesn't quite work.

Movie Details

  • In theaters: December 13, 2019
  • On DVD or streaming: March 17, 2020
  • Cast: Imogen Poots , Cary Elwes , Aleyse Shannon
  • Director: Sophia Takai
  • Inclusion Information: Female actors, Black actors
  • Studio: Universal Pictures
  • Genre: Horror
  • Topics: Holidays
  • Run time: 98 minutes
  • MPAA rating: PG-13
  • MPAA explanation: violence, terror, thematic content involving sexual assault, language, sexual material and drinking
  • Last updated: March 8, 2023

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