Frozen (Review)

(2/05/10; Drama, Horror)
Emma Bell, Kevin Zegers, Shawn Ashmore, Kane Hodder
SCR/DIR: Adam Green
MPAA: Rated R for some disturbing images and language.
1 hour 34 mins
BOX: $246,176

Three friends get stuck on a ski lift after the resort closes. What follows should be a nail-biting close-quarters psychological thriller in the vein of Buried (2010), and yes, there are moments that are unsettling.

But much of what transpires is the result of contrivances meant to keep the characters at odds. For example, why are there no cell phones? Well, they left them back at the lodge. Why don’t they throw their skis at an approaching snowcat driver before he starts to leave so he’d see them?

And about the wolves … they only seem to appear after an ill-fated attempt to leave the elevated chair. I’ll give Green credit insomuch as he’s crafted a deliciously tense premise and shot it in an effective way. I’m even okay with the banal dialogue seeing how desperate situations tend to make people chatty.

But I wish Green had played fair with his characters and not made them so stupid. Every one of them makes a colossally dumb decision that worsens their situation. Plus, it would have been nice if they had more obstacles than sharp wires and hungry wolves. (Anchor Bay)


Author: Dennis Willis

Dennis Willis is an award-winning producer, TV host, producer, director, editor (he preferred Avid until a torrid affair with Adobe Premiere, and the rest is history), author and film critic (print and radio). Dennis produced and hosted the TV programs Reel Life, FilmTrip, Soundwaves (1983-2008) and produces the annual Soundwaves Xmas program. He is currently the film critic on KGO Radio in San Francisco, and a member of both the San Francisco Film Critics Circle and the Broadcast Film Critics Association.

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