To All A Goodnight has the dubious honour of being actor David Hess’ sole directing credit, on a filmography that includes Last House on the Left and Swamp Thing.
Arguably ahead of the curve of the slasher eruption that would send shockwaves through Hollywood in 1981, To All A Goodnight is a low budget, nasty slasher that would have benefited from an increased budget and slightly more attention to detail.
Having said this, it does everything you expect of a film of this ilk, with some decent kill set pieces, include one involving a plane propeller.
Despite its fairly straight forward plot, it does have a sting in its tail, when it is revealed that there are two killers dressed as Santa, terrorising this remote private school.
With a filming schedule of just 10 days, clearly, David Hess and his cast (including Jennifer Runyon), had little time to linger on shots and do multiple takes, which does show in some sequences.
To All a Goodnight also has the strange casting of Harry Reems, a noted adult film star, playing the unfortunate pilot who is killed off by the killer Santa duo.
Four years later, Silent Night, Deadly Night suffered from protests about depicting a killer Santa on-screen, a fate that didn’t befall To All a Goodnight, but this is perhaps because it had a more low key release.
While evidently not the best Christmas slasher, this film is an example of a production with a limited budget attempting to make the best film they can in a short time window.
Have you seen To All a Goodnight? Let us know in the comments.