Silent Night, Deadly Night 5: The Toy Maker – USA, 1991 – reviews

‘He’s home… but he’s not alone.’

Silent Night, Deadly Night 5: The Toy Maker is a 1991 American science fiction horror feature film directed by Martin Kitrosser (Daddy’s Girl [1996] and the screenwriter of Friday the 13th Part III and A New Beginning) from a script co-written with producer Brian Yuzna (The DentistSociety; Bride of Re-Animator; et al).

Screaming Mad George provided the special makeup effects.

The movie stars William Thorne, Jane Higginson, Van Quattro, Tracy Fraim, Conan Yuzna and Mickey Rooney. Ironically, Rooney had publicly condemned the first Silent Night, Deadly Night film in an open letter sent to the producers, only to later, and hypocritically, appear in this film.

Both Neith Hunter and Clint Howard, who were Kim and Ricky in Initiation: Silent Night, Deadly Night 4, reprise their roles in cameo appearances.

Plot:

Late one night in December, a young boy named Derek Quinn (William Thorne) hears the doorbell ring and goes downstairs and finds a Christmas present addressed to him on the porch. His father Tom (Van Quattro) reprimands him for being up so late and opening the door, sending him off to bed.

Instead Derek watches from the stairs as his curious father opens the gift. Finding a musical orb shaped like Santa Claus he activates it, causing it to strangle him with retractable cords; as Tom struggles he slips and falls onto a fireplace poker, his impaled body being found by his wife Sarah (Jane Higginson) a few moments later…

Reviews:

“You get a pretty good selection of devilish playthings, such as a Santa with snake-like arms that suffocates people, a robot larva that goes for the eyes, Acme Rocket Skates that would give Wile E. Coyote nightmares, RC cars with buzzsaws attached and tanks that fire live ammunition.” Adventures in Poor Taste

“Unfortunately, the potential is never realised, thanks to a pervading sense of laziness, a lack of any decent gore (apart from one moment that features some eyeball trauma), and a move to focus, instead, on another main plot element that is so silly that it completely undoes the third act.” For It is a Man’s Number

“Granted, there’s only so much one can do with killer toys, and they do branch things out a bit (such as rocket roller blades that careen its user into traffic), but still, the movie lacks any really good kills…” Horror Movie a Day

“The original was a gory and fun slasher film, with much to recommend, where as this is a dramatic, fantasy terror, where toys come to life, and wacky twists reveal themselves as the final act wraps up. Surprisingly, it’s alright. The crazy 90s fashions are leaping about, and it tries not to take itself too seriously.” Oh-the-Horror

“Featuring a series of killer toys (which is only the basis of the story, which goes over-the-top really quickly), the movie is definitely not for children, but adults with a strong stomach and a gallows sense of humor should find plenty to enjoy here.” Pop Culture Thoughts

“Films that take creative chances with the material and do something out of the ordinary always get bonus marks in my book, even if the execution isn’t so hot. Thankfully, whilst Silent Night, Deadly Night 5: The Toy Maker‘s twist makes no sense in the slightest, the manner of its execution is staged well enough to get you to suspend your disbelief for a few moments.” Popcorn Pictures

” …the film lacks energy or intensity and pretty much feels devoid of any terror. The killer toys idea is interesting, but not executed very well, and actually hampers the filmmaker from making a good film.” Strictly Splatter

“So is it any good? In a charming and energetic straight to video way, yes, even if the nutty “surprise” ending is telegraphed a mile off (did I mention Rooney’s character was called Joe Petto and had a son called Pino? Joe Petto. Pino. Get it? Good). It’s a lively and thoroughly enjoyable camp schlocker…” UK Horror Scene

“Entertaining entry that might actually be the best in the series thanks to its mildly jokey tone, a script that’s filled with in-jokes […] a decent toy assault moment on a babysitter and her boyfriend and one nice “jump” moment involving a Jeep.” The Video Graveyard

Cast and credits:

  • William Thorne … Derek
  • Jane Higginson … Sarah Quinn
  • Van Quattro … Tom Quinn
  • Tracy Fraim … Noah Adams
  • Neith Hunter … Kim
  • Conan Yuzna … Lonnie
  • Mickey Rooney … Joe Petto
  • Brian Bremer … Pino
  • Gerry Black … Harold
  • Clint Howard … Ricky
  • Thornton Simmons … Other Santa
  • Catherine Schreiber … Mother
  • Zoe Yuzna … Brandy
  • Jennifer Pusheck … Elf
  • Billy Oscar … Dad
  • Cathy Yuzna … Stroller #1
  • Gary Schmoeller … Stroller #2
  • Amy L. Taylor … Merideth
  • Eric Welch … Buck
  • Richard N. Gladstein … Driver Dad
  • Jan Linder … Nurse

Image credits: Monster Brains

Related:

Silent Night, Deadly Night (1984)

Silent Night, Deadly Night Part 2 (1987)

Silent Night, Deadly Night III: Better Watch Out! (1989)

Initiation: Silent Night, Deadly Night 4 (1990)

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