Franchise Review: “Silent Night, Deadly Night Part 4: Initiation”

A reporter investigating the bizarre death of a woman who leaped from a building in flames finds herself mixed up in a cult of witches who are making her part of their sacrificial ceremony during the Christmas season.

Well after fans have put up with in the last two features you wonder why they decided to do another.

You also wonder how anyone was talked into putting up money for another, plus where does the story go next? What else is there that can be done? Well here’s where your questions get answered, here in the UK the film is called “Bugs”, not “Silent Night, Deadly Night 4: Bugs”, just “Bugs”.

Also this film doesn’t even features a killer Santa, this got me thinking that either they did a film set around Christmas and then used the “Silent Night” name as a marketing strategy in the US or they were trying to actually change things and move away from the whole killer Santa thing.

Now what about the film itself, well actually I must admit that it’s actually not too bad, I know I was surprised too. I don’t know if it’s because the previous two films set my standards so low but I enjoyed it. Don’t get me wrong it’s still not great but Clint Howard and Reggie Banister are always fun to watch.

Despite this, like I said the feature isn’t great. The film does take a while to get going and you’ll find it drags in a lot of places but you can tell the film makers did try here and as a viewer you can appreciate that, fans of practical Horror effects will especially appreciate the work featured here.

I think of “Silent Night, Deadly Night 4: Initiation” as the “Halloween 3” of the series, think of that what you will.


Miscellaneous facts about the film:

Screenwriter Zeph E. Daniel incorporated several ideas and scenarios that he had originally envisioned for his previous film, Society (1989), but had been unable to fit into the storyline. This film’s U.S. release would predate that of Society by nearly two years.

The basis of the film’s script was originally meant for the third Silent Night, Deadly Night film, but ended up being used here after the makers of that film turned the original script down.

This marks the first time in the series that doesn’t involve a killer Santa.

This marks the first of two times Clint Howard plays a character named Ricky. He is the only actor to play him more than once (not counting archive footage). It is unclear if he is playing the same character from the first two films.

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