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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Long out of print.
To All a Goodnight is a 1980 slasher film directed by David Hess best known as Krug in Wes Craven's Last House on the Left. According to the IMDb this was released January 30th, 1980, which would make this one of the if not the first slasher released after Carpenter's Halloween. Many knock this film for being cliched which is absurd. The basic idea for the film does take...
Published 3 months ago by Dave. K

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Directed by the star of the original LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT.
David Hess, who acted as psychos in films such as LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT (1972), HITCH HIKE (1977) and HOUSE ON THE EDGE OF THE PARK (1980), takes a turn at directing here and mainly comes up snake eyes. This is basic stalk-and-slash stuff as five college co-eds spend Christmas Vacation in their dorm, invite their boyfriends over for some hot sex and get slaughtered by...
Published 3 months ago by Fred Adelman


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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Long out of print., October 27, 2014
By 
Dave. K (Staten Island, NY,) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: To All a Goodnight [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
To All a Goodnight is a 1980 slasher film directed by David Hess best known as Krug in Wes Craven's Last House on the Left. According to the IMDb this was released January 30th, 1980, which would make this one of the if not the first slasher released after Carpenter's Halloween. Many knock this film for being cliched which is absurd. The basic idea for the film does take a couple of plot points from Black Christmas with the Christmas and sorority setting. However seeing as this film came out before Friday the 13th (more on that in a bit) as well as Halloween II, Prom Night and so on it isn't fair to knock this for being cliched because than we can knock Halloween for being cliched. The most interesting thing is how identical this is at times to Friday the 13th (the final act) and there's also a character named Ralph warning of pending danger. Unless somebody from either film saw a script or rough cut of the other film it's just an odd coincidence.

Apparently To All a Goodnight was shot in 10-days and true or not the one clear thing is there wasn't a whole lot of time. To All a Goodnight isn't Halloween at best its a middle of the road slasher film, but with more time perhaps it could have turned out a little better, but for what it's worth it is a fairly fun film even if quite rough. Another thing of interest is the killer wears a Santa suit and 4-years later Silent Night, Deadly Night would do the same and spark such outrage it would be pulled after two weeks.

Bottom line is this isn't a great film. It's quite flawed and again perhaps a little more time results could have been a bit better. If you've seen any 80s slashers you'll know how this plays out, but just remember this came out before the more popular 80s slasher films.

To All a Goodnight had a VHS release than was long OOP. The VHS was super dark and it was quite difficult to get into the film. I figured that's the best we'd ever get until Scorpion Releasing by way of Kino Lorber released To All a Goodnight on blu-ray and DVD. To my shock the blu-ray is fantastic. Film grain is natural looking and the print brighten things up so we can actually see what's happening. Detail is excellent as well. The HD quality isn't gonna win awards, but the transfer is very good, which again was better than I thought it would be. There are also some extras. 3 interviews and a trailer.

This wouldn't rate in my top 10 slasher films, but its an enjoyable in its own weird way. The biggest issue is the day for night scenes. It's quite obvious it's daytime, but than in the next shot clearly night. It did sort of take me out of the film. But with an ultra low budget and limited shooting days you gotta do what you gotta do to complete the film.

80s slasher fans will wanna check this out, but just don't expect a slasher classic. The blu-ray features an excellent HD transfer. Solid audio and a nice batch if extras. The overall release would make my top 10 of 2014
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Jennifer Runyon in a Slasher Movie=Required Viewing, August 14, 2014
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This review is from: To All a Goodnight [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
I wrote a longer review of the vhs, so I'll keep this brief and to the point. If you like Jennifer Runyon, she is heavily featured here. I find her gorgeous, as do many other men. She is a legitimate selling point. She is one of those blondes who remind you why so many guys like blondes.

Selling points BEYOND Jennifer? Well, let's see.........

I can only imagine one kind of person who would like this film. Someone who loves atmospheric, traditional 80's slasher films. It's not big on gore, so if you require that, you may as well move along. But the action does take place in a big, dark sorority house. They got that part right. They create a unique sense of time and place, which I enjoy in this kind of movie. This is an ideal environment for a slasher film, since you know that the killer could easily be in any room at any time.

That's basically it. A great big, dark house, with a killer lurking somewhere in the shadows, and a heroine who is sexy but somewhat dimwitted.

Most of you won't need to hear any more to ascertain whether this one is for you or not.........

I happen to like the aforementioned elements. However, there's plenty here to NOT like, as well......

Repellent characters. Perhaps the worst dialogue in cinematic history. A really lame musical theme(sounds like something off of PBS, but PBS from the 70's).

In fairness, I DO find myself looking forward to seeing this in widescreen for the first time. Many of the interior scenes of the dark house are quite good-this is largely the strength of the film. I love the Christmas tree with all the large, retro lights. It captures the feel of an early 80's Christmas, with the big colored lights and all the tinsel......

If any of this sounds good to you, you might find something to like here. If not, I honestly don't think you should waste your money.

Keep in mind.....I'm a FAN of this film, and of the slasher genre. So if I find certain elements to be weak, you can imagine how the average person might respond. You have to have a vivid imagination to appreciate something like this, and the willingness to overlook the flaws. You have to be somebody who gets so much out of the big,dark, creepy house that you can somehow absorb the dumb characters and assinine dialogue.

I am such a person.

But this movie is definitely not for everybody.

UPDATE: DECEMBER, 2014-I have sat through the dvd a couple of times now, and it is like seeing a new movie. The lighting is so much better. They offer much better picture clarity, while still maintaining the gloom and darkness that give the house such a claustrophobic feel. As someone who has sat through the film dozens of times on vhs, I honestly had no idea that this film could look so good.

The house-especially the interior-is really the star of the movie. And this edition does it full justice. It is big,and dark, and creepy. But every so often, the gloom is broken by beautiful stained glass, or by the coruscating glow of the Christmas lights. Now, on dvd, these factors are vividly realized in a way that was not possible before. The contrast between the dark of the shadows, and the seasonal light and color, is now fully captured. The result is visually striking. While the movie falls short of classic status, the sorority house in To All A Good Night provides a setting that is just about as strong as you could ask for.

I don't know if I've ever seen a movie that was so much improved by being released on dvd. This was money well spent.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Directed by the star of the original LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT., October 23, 2014
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This review is from: To All a Goodnight [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
David Hess, who acted as psychos in films such as LAST HOUSE ON THE LEFT (1972), HITCH HIKE (1977) and HOUSE ON THE EDGE OF THE PARK (1980), takes a turn at directing here and mainly comes up snake eyes. This is basic stalk-and-slash stuff as five college co-eds spend Christmas Vacation in their dorm, invite their boyfriends over for some hot sex and get slaughtered by someone dressed in a Santa suit. Everyone is killed except the virginal Nancy (Jennifer Runyon) and the near-virginal Alex (Forrest Swanson). There's a double twist-ending that's telegraphed more than halfway through the film, so all the viewer has to enjoy is the beheadings, knifings, strangulations, crossbow arrow impalements and other mayhem on view. The only problem is the film is shot so dark that it's hard to make out anything that is going on. Most of the action takes place at night and most of the scenes are underlit. Too bad, since some of the murders are inventive and would be better appreciated if more light were shown on the subject. Since this is one of the original films to use a person in a Santa suit as the killer, this film does get some credit, but Hess could have jazzed-up the proceedings by making the killer more manic and, the film as a whole, more enlightening. Worthwhile only if you want to see David Hess' only directorial effort. Also starring Linda Gentile, William Lauer, Judith Bridges, Katherine Herrington and Buck West. Written by Alex Rebar, who was THE INCREDIBLE MELTING MAN (1977) and wrote and executive-produced DEMENTED (1980). Available on DVD & Blu-Ray from Kino Lorber/Scorpion Releasing in it's OAR and it stands heads over the dark VHS version. You can actually see what is going on. Rated R.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars "God put 'em here to give us pleasure.", May 17, 2008
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This review is from: To All a Good Night (VHS Tape)
If ever a movie was aimed at a narrow audience, it was this one. If you like Jennifer Runyon, or if you like slasher films, you may get something out of this.I like both, so I got my money's worth(so to speak.) I gave it 4 stars, based mostly upon those two factors. Jennifer Runyon was one of my favorite ladies from the 80's. Once I learned she had made a horror movie, it was a foregone conclusion that I would have to see it. The result of this combination is a somewhat quirky film. I kind of like it, but, again, I represent the target audience. And even I don't like it THAT much.

One reason why I'm somewhat reluctant to recommend it is that its assets are largely unintentional. For example, if you're in the mood for a good horror movie, I'd rule this out immediately. It works much better as a good 'bad' movie to watch with friends. As horror, this is mild, at best. But as unintentional comedy, it has few peers. Jennifer Runyon is beautiful, and her interpretation of the nice girl is sweet. However, the role is written in such a way as to make you wonder if she is truly a nice girl, or if perhaps she behaves herself because she is too stupid to think of anything else to do.Some of her lines are borderline Shakespearean-('I'm really scared', 'I'm scared,' 'Okay.')Then, by way of contrast, the 'bad' girls(and their boyfriends) are so irritating, and so ignorant, that they simply cannot be butchered quickly enough to suit my tastes.

(If you've ever seen something like 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' or 'Dawson's Creek' or one of those things where the young people are all incredibly articulate and grandiloquent-and if you ever tried to imagine what the EXACT OPPOSITE of this would sound like-this is your movie. These people are so far beyond dumb-they are GRATINGLY dumb, they are nails-on-the-chalkboard dumb.Seriously, I've never heard such ignorant banter. This film features the worst dialogue in history, and the most repellent cast of characters. Of course, the bright side is that you get to see them dispatched pretty hastily.)

Which brings us to Ralph. There have been a multitude of Creepy Janitors in cinematic history. But Ralph may well be king. Believe me, this guy is worth the price of the movie by himself. It was he who delivered the classic line I used in my title. In explaining his philosophy, he proclaims,'It's our duty to take care of the plants. God put 'em here to give us pleasure.'And he delivers these lines with greater sincerity than you would ordinarily find in a eulogy. Sometimes movie janitors are supposed to be weird, and sometimes they are depicted as being wise. Ralph provides you with both. It's like Joe Bob Briggs used to say-in movies like this, you should listen to the crazy guy. He knows what he's talking about, BECAUSE he's crazy.

There are many priceless nuggets sprinkled throughout this thing.Like the police inspector in the checkered sport jacket. Clint Eastwood couldn't look intimidating in one of those wild 70's blazers. Or, even better, the scene where the girls find blood on the floor next to the refrigerator, and they aren't concerned. One of them assumes that Ralph has cut himself with the pruning shears.(Hell, it's just Ralph, right?Who cares if he's lying somewhere bleeding to death.)Or the anemic soundtrack. The music in this movie sounds like it was lifted off of some old PBS educational program.Or the part where the would-be victim becomes so unbalanced with terror that she breaks into some sort of song and dance routine. (I'm not being ironic-that's literally what happened.)You have to see it to believe it.

To be fair, the movie does have some redeeming traits. The sorority house is huge and dark, and provides a perfect environment for a slasher film.You also get a sense of nostalgia from the old-fashioned plus size Christmas lights and all the tinsel.The setting is nearly ideal for a holiday-themed slasher movie.In addition to this, you are also provided with a dose of(of all things) foreshadowing about halfway through the film. That's right, they even include a scene which is incredibly subtle. During the part when the police inspector is speaking to the group at the house, take particular note of the housemother. Watch her carefully, and you'll find a hint as to what's happening as the story unfolds.Who would have expected to find such a thing in a movie of this sort? It's almost as if the director got sick, and some smart person had to come in and take over for a couple of hours.

If you are a slasher movie fan, and you are drawn to films that create a strong sense of time and place, then this one may be a good choice for you. The interior of the house is distinctive, and the action has a claustrophobic feel to it. There is a creepy aura about the building, and a sense that you are visiting a macabre little world that exists all to itself. If that sounds appealing, you may enjoy this one.By that standard, you could justify giving this film four stars, as I have. But that rating applies ONLY for those people who, like myself, love: (1)slasher movies that feature big, dark houses (2)Jennifer Runyon, (3)retro Christmas lights and tinsel, and (4) 80's nostalgia.

For anyone else, it would probably be a waste of time, and hardly worthy of one star.

All in all, though,I like it.This is based almost entirely on the strength of the creepy,atmospheric sorority house, as well as Jennifer Runyon as the adorable-but-dense heroine. Plus, this is one of the greatest unintentional comedies of all time.I am strangely fond of this movie.But there is no doubt that you have to be a certain kind of person, and be in a certain type of mood, to sit through it.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Slasher gem from the 80's!, February 22, 2014
This review is from: To All a Good Night (VHS Tape)
After Halloween the Golden Age of Slashers had begun. To All a Good Night was done early on in 1980. It was directed by the great David Hess known best for Last House on the Left. This movie is a guilty pleasure for me. I've seen a lot of slashers. I am a hardcore slasher fan. This is one of the overlooked ones.The acting was pretty decent for a slasher movie. Linda Gentile was my favorite character and actress in this movie. Jennifer Runyon also did a great job. I liked all the actors in this film. I think they did a good job. The movie had a lot of strong points. It's cool that it's set on the holiday Christmas. This movie has mystery as it's exciting as always in a slasher to guess the killer. I didn't guess right in this one. I was surprised at the ending and that was a good thing. This movie was very creepy. It definitely had it's share of scenes that were creepy. There is good gore in this movie to satisfy the slasher fan. There is a high body count. It has creepy characters and likable characters you care about and don't want to see killed. Overall this is a great movie for a true horror movie fan. If you are not that big of a horror movie fan I still say give it a shot. Take it for what it is a fun popcorn scary movie. Cheers and enjoy!
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3.0 out of 5 stars To All a Good Time! Horror fans rejoice, January 10, 2015
By 
Damien Shalley (Brisbane, Australia) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: To All a Goodnight [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
To All a Good Time!
Horror fans rejoice! There is no video obscurity that specialist DVD/Blu-ray companies cannot recover and place before an unsuspecting world. “To All a Goodnight”, directed by late genre icon David Hess (of “Last House on the Left” infamy), last saw the light of day as a cassette release from Media Home Entertainment in the heyday of home video, the awesome (awful?) 80’s. Now it’s back from the dead in a nicely presented disc version from Kino Lorber, and fans of the film (there are at least 12 of us, myself included) will not be disappointed.
This one captured my attention originally because it was just so “out there”. I mean, c’mon, a killer Santa! Not even slasher fans wanted to see that! The success of “Silent Night, Deadly Night” proved me dead wrong soon after. (Dead wrong – get it? Never mind).
The plot is simple yet deceptive. A number of girls from an elite private academy do not go home for Christmas for various reasons and spend the holidays on campus (and in harm’s way). The usual shenanigans ensue – fornication, substance abuse, extreme bitchiness – and one by one the girls are dispatched by a crazed slasher in a Santa suit. And just when you think you’ve got it all figured out, well, there’s a twist in this twisted tale.
The film looks beautiful on disc, the audio quality is more than acceptable and the extras include three interview segments (star Jennifer Runyon and noted genre producer Alex Rebar’s pieces are the most interesting), as well as a lengthy trailer.
This film is far from perfect , but it’s my idea of perfect fun. All of the elements that slasher fans expect from their entertainment can be found here. They’re not very well executed (executed – get it? Never mind again), but they’re here. This is so much different to (and for all of its flaws, still WAY better than) all those sterile post-modern slasher movies that followed in the wake of “Scream” and “I Know What You Did Last Summer”. The presence of the beautiful Jennifer Runyon doesn’t hurt either, and the whole thing is just so wild that even those with a mild interest in this type of thing should wrap this up and take it home as a present.
Season’s Greetings horror fans!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, December 8, 2014
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This review is from: To All a Goodnight [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
A++
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars CANDY CANE..........BLOODY CANE!, December 3, 2007
By 
This review is from: To All a Good Night (VHS Tape)
Coeds at the exclusive Calvin Finishing School(where they
really do finish you)are finished by a Santa-suited psycho out
to avenge the accidental death of a hazing victim. This unimaginative
but presentable Christmas carnage was directed by non other than
David(LAST HOUSE-EDGE OF PARK)Hess and scripted by The Incredible
Melting Man star Alex Rebar. Worth a look if you got a laundry
going.
p.s.How many HORROR films are there with Santa or X-mas themes
to them I like to know???
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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Definitely one of the lesser Christmas horror flicks, December 25, 2011
This review is from: To All a Good Night (VHS Tape)
I have the Media VHS of this and dragged it out last night (Christmas Eve) for a watch, since I'd only watched it once since I got it, and that was years ago. Guess I forgot what it was like because it's definitely forgettable. Directed by David Hess (Last House On The Left), it's about a group of girls (and their boyfriends, who flew in from somewhere to a nearby airstrip) who are stuck at their dorm or sorority over Christmas vacation. A couple of years earlier there was a girl that died in some kind of sorority hazing and now someone in a Santa suit is picking off these obnoxious gals and guys one by one. The night scenes are so dark you can't tell what's going on. The murders are pretty unimaginative, and the victims are just hanging out ripe for the picking, it seems. This is one of the films where the characters are mostly just so unlikeable that you root for the killer. Toward the end, one of the girls seems to lose her mind and spends the rest of the film singing and pirouetting around the house and is left to her own devices as the last of the survivors make a run for it..what in the hell? I much prefer films like "Christmas Evil" and the original "Black Christmas"...even the made-for-TV "Home For The Holidays" with Sally Field is more creepy. A mediocre effort at best.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Go to sleep, December 11, 2014
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This review is from: To All a Goodnight [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
Save your money, if just ten buck or less get a copy. It typically slasher film with poor acting, but it appears no nudity for slasher film. Just poor acting and cheese story line. Really has nothing to do with Christmas.
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To All a Goodnight [Blu-ray]
To All a Goodnight [Blu-ray] by David Hess (Blu-ray - 2014)
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