Tuesday, February 22, 2011
My cousin fell off a chairlift when he was a kid.
My aunt and uncle live in Lake Tahoe, CA and they've been skiing all their lives. The way I heard the story, my cousin was leaning too far forward and just fell face-first off the lift. I used to think about that incident when I family went on skiing trips. The chairlifts in Tahoe never had safety bars and the weight of boots on your feet almost pull you out of the chair. I used to be terrified that I'd get tangled up in someone's boots or tilt too far forward and pitch myself off into the icy ground below.
Anyway, I didn't much care for Frozen.
Frozen tells the story of two dudebros and a girlfriend who get stuck on a chairlift. The rest of the movie is spent alternating between attempts to get down and moments of introspection. Eventually things work out and some credits roll.
I wasn't that big a fan off Hatchet, the movie that made Adam Green famous. It's a classic among horror fans, but I thought it was too derivative and playing too much to the crowd. I'd heard about Frozen when it first toured theaters, but I wasn't particularly interested. The whole premise sounded like the hoary old theatrical trope of a small group of characters locked in a room and being forced to confront the truth about themselves. To pull that old chestnut off, you have to really good at dialogue and characterization and those elements weren't Hatchet's strong points.
So I do have to confess to a bit of bias even before I sat down to watch the movie. But I didn't enjoy it all that much.
A couple of things really didn't work for me. First, the earlier parts of the movie feel like a low-rent MTV special. There's a lot of montage shots of the characters snowboarding around set to obnoxious pop-punk. The dialogue is really bad, especially in all the bits where Green is trying to establish the relationships between the character. One guy is all "you've changed, man" and another is all "dude, leave my girlfriend alone" and there's a bunch of resentful passive aggressive sniping and by that point I was playing scrabble on my laptop.
Ultimately, the movie relies on too many cheats. I had a hard enough time believing that the perfect string of coincidences could happen to get these characters trapped in the first place, and once the superwolves started their hideous siege (all filmed in tight close up) it kinda lost me.
It's basically a movie about three boring, unpleasant people stuck in a bad situation. I just couldn't bring myself to care.
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