NEW YEAR'S EVIL (1980)
D. Emmett Alston
FULL FRAME - On Netflix Instant
This is yet another in the very long line of holiday themed slasher films that were released in the wake of HALLOWEEN. But this is not HALLOWEEN, it isn't even FRIDAY THE 13th. Hell this isn't even GRADUATION DAY!!!
The set up is interesting though. On New Years Eve while the standard end of the year TV show is being broadcast a psycho begins calling the host on the year threatening to kill someone she knows, every hour until the show goes off the air. He starts making good right at midnight killing a nurse in an insane asylum. Somehow the cops get it in their heads that he is killing someone at midnight in each time zone. But that doesn't actually seem to be the case as he works his way back to the hotel of the tired, past middle age sex symbol host.
The movie is too concerned with the melodrama of the Host's kid or her ex husband who we do not see for a large portion of the movie. If it isn't the melodrama then it is long padded scenes of really shitty pre new-wave bands playing during the show. There is actually very little horror on the film.
The movie reminded me a little of VISITING HOURS (1981) as it is clearly a larger budgeted production trying to mine the success of other indie horror films of the time. But where as VISITING HOURS is very aware of what kind of film it is, never afraid to do what it is needed to be both scary and attention grabbing, NEW YEAR'S EVIL tries to be too polite and fails because of it.
REVIEW @ Andrew Copp