Thursday, November 4, 2010

I say chilly, you say FROZEN

There are a few things in life I've vowed to simply never do, both for personal morality and plain intelligence. They include, but are not limited to the following:
-Go to a tanning salon
-Eat dog (I had the opportunity; I passed)
-Attempt skiing

Believe it or not, despite my hobbit-esque physique, I'm actually somewhat athletic, especially if the sport is softball or badminton (I'm serious). That being said, I'm also, without question, the clumsiest woman born in the 1980s. I know, EVERYBODY says that, but anyone who has actually had the pleasure of walking down the street with me only to at some point wonder where I went (i.e., the ground) knows this is true. For further proof, I submit my following experience:

-In the fourth grade, I plummeted off the balance beam and encumbered a giant apple-sized bump on my forehead, much to the amusement by fellow classmates

-I tripped up the stairs on a school trip to the Constitutional Hall in Philadelphia, comforting my embarrassment with the thought that maybe the same thing happened to Thomas Jefferson

-I've slipped on a banana peel. It wasn't funny. Okay, it probably was for others but shut up.


-I once stepped on a pitchfork lurking in the grass and had it me in the hat (thank goodness for aforementioned softball tendencies)
For these reasons plus 28 years of more, I shall never ski.
But that really has very little to do with Adam Green's 2010 winter-set film, Frozen, now doesn't it? I just wanted to be honest about where I was coming from as a person.
Quick Plot: Three college kids head to the mountains for a day of skiing and snowboarding. Dan and Lynch have been pals since the first grade, but Dan's girlfriend Parker is new to the group and, as we learn to Lynch's distaste, skiing in general. After a day of montage-y fun on the bunny hills, the trio decides to take one last trek down the real mountains at night. 

Oh kids, haven't you read the synopsis of this film?
Due to a series of believable misunderstandings surrounding closing time, the ski lift stops right as our leads have reached the middle of the ride. Alone. And cold.

Oh, and it's Sunday night, meaning nobody is due back to the lodge for another five days. Suddenly midterms ain't looking too shabby, are they coeds?
I won't go into any more synopsizing of Frozen for fear of spoilers, although in truth, there aren't too many huge surprises. This isn't necessarily a criticism; if anything, Frozen unfolds in believable style, as our not-overly-bright but still likable heroes have to work with what anyone in that situation would: freezing cold, darkness, internal disputes, heights, and of course, lack of a cell phone (c'mon skeptical viewer: you know that any participation in a horror movie negates your power to ever make a call while in a dangerous situation). Much like The Ruins, Frozen is more about how these individuals handle an awful and deadly situation than what necessarily happens to them. Call it survivalist horror, if you will. It doesn't quite pack the joy of killer klowns or demonic possessions, but when done correctly, that's a-ok.

High Points
Hell yes you will earn points with this audience member by citing the Sarlacc Pit as the worst possible death ever

Credit certainly goes to Kevin Zegers, Emma Bell, and Shawn Ashmore for holding our attention and sympathies, something aided immensely by Green's funny and realistic dialogue

Low Points
As great as the idea behind Frozen is, there's something about it that never quite amplifies past a certain point. By the last act, we're more curious than concerned as to what the fate of the characters will be. I'm not sure if this is a matter of story, character, or, quite possibly, my own personal taste

Lessons Learned
Always give a friend a spare key, particularly if you have a dog

You can never wear too many layers

Though awful and impossible, mastering pull-ups in gym class is an incredibly useful life skill that should not be avoided in your elementary days

Frozen is a great idea for a horror film, and Adam Green (Hatchet) executes it with skill. Though the film never quite ascends past its setup to give us anything truly terrifying, it's an easy recommend and like most of Green's films, a loaded DVD to own. I had a tense and fun time watching it, but personally, I can't really see revisiting it with the same relish as something like Hatchet. It's a different type of film with a lower rewatchability factor (for me). But hey, it's still something good, original, and supportive of my stance on death sports as dumb, so high fives all around.


  1. I've been on the fence about watching it. I guess I might give it a go. Though the premise just affirms why it's not smart to ride in chairlifts.

  2. See, the only reason I've ever had even an inkling to go skiing is to ride a chairlift. And now I can't even do that!

    Still a neat movie though.

  3. I agree on all points....
    I'd certainly never go skiing. Look what happened to Sonny Bono!

    And excellent review here.

  4. Thanks Andrew!

    And how did I forget about Sonny Bono??? The man played with the Troll for goodness sake, but he couldn't survive the slopes.

  5. Great stuff, ma'am, and right on. Chairlifts used to look so fun, now not so much.

  6. Now do I have to feel this way about amusement park sky-lifts? Damnit, this means I have to WALK half a mile to the other side. Curse you Greeeeeeeeeeeen!!!

  7. Great post. Love the title to this post too! I liked how you started off talking about how this would never happen to you, and then you got into the movie. I liked the movie. Could have done with a little less of the conversations, but I know they were needed.

  8. Just picked this up on blu-ray because it was on sale for like $9 and I couldn't resist. Haven't watched it yet but I thought it was an interesting premise. Seems like your review lines up with the expectations I have. My own review pending...

  9. Thanks and welcome Horr0! The trick of a movie like this is to make you care about the leads, which I think all the conversations helped do. I can definitely understand it dragging a bit for some people, but I guess the dialogue was interesting enough for me personally. Sarlacc Pitt reference? I'm sold. And were I on that lift--though of course, that would NEVER happen--my biggest fear would probably be that my spoiled apartment kitties would starve to death. So I guess I identified with that!

    Can't wait to check out your review Matt! That Blu-Ray is probably pretty fabulous, since Green always loads his releases with extras.

  10. Oh Emily it's like we were separated at birth or something! I didn't know my clumsiness could be replicated but here you are. You can still hold the title for the 80s though because I was born in the 70's so we can be decade champions together or something.
    I have also:
    1) Stepped on a rake that hit me square in the face (this was not that long ago btw. I had to go see twilight with an icepack on my face - and really should have just skipped it!)
    2) fallen down at the gas station while pumping gas and ripped a hole in the knee of my pants forcing me to be an hour late for work because I had to drive home to change.
    3) I fall down almost every time I go to the post office, once it was icy and I was hitting the lock button on my keychain at the same time as I started sliding, in my spazzyness I just kept hitting the button as I fell, which caused the horn to honk and everyone in Shepherdstown to look at me and laugh.
    4) At Shepherds homecoming in 99 I fell all the way from the top of the bleachers to the bottom only being stopped by the metal bars at the very front. (to be fair, there was alcohol involved in that one)
    And finally (just for this post, I could go on for days) Just yesterday I almost gave myself a black eye answering the phone at work. I picked it up and just hit myself in the face with it because I was trying to multi-task... it's a problem.

    Anyway, all of this leads me to tell you that I do in fact ski, and it's like one of the only times I'm not a spaz, so there is still hope :P

  11. Lis, we shall take over time! We first need to find a few klutzes born in the other decades and go from there.

    1. The biggest tragedy of any of this is that you had to actually go see Twilight. Though in truth, having half your face covered with an ice pack might have spared you some of the pain.

    2. At least you didn't get set on fire when some wiseass dropped his cigarette (in slo motion, natch) into the gasoline that tripped you!

    3. Ice is just evil on so very many levels. Having lived in Moscow for almost a year, I eventually gave up and would only wear dark pants. At least then the slush didn't stain as much.

    4. That sounds incredibly painful. And memorable for others. and hey, as my brother attended Shepherdstown and I visited it quite a bit back in the day, I can almost guarantee I must've slipped in some of the very same spots as you!

    5. Multitasking is not meant for people like us. Take, for example, talking and drinking. You don't want to know how many shirts I've ruined doing that.

    And my most recent trip came today when I was standing next to a toaster at work, leaned to the left and jsut, for no reason, twisted my ankle. Coworkers were quite amused at the fact that I could actually hurt myself when simply leaning on something. But I imagine you totally understand.

    There really should be a support group for people like us. I fear ever holding babies because really, the odds are so high that I'll at some point fall on top of them.


  12. Emily, aaah falling down at work, I work at a law firm and once while showing a client to the conference room just fell down while I was literally just standing there. Lucky for me the client was understanding and didn't accuse me of being drunk :)

    I actually know your brother, he was one of my first friends at Shepherd, we were freshmen together and still hang out on a fairly regular basis... He's "brothers" with my fiance. When I stumbled on your blog and read an article you wrote for Rogue which has your name I was all WAIT! I know this girl! Sort of... I mean I don't know if we've ever met IRL, though it's probable... We were definitely in the same places at some point... probably falling down...

  13. Ahh, such a small world of clumsiness! I twisted my ankle slightly tonight and was so happy when my friends admitted that there was some sort of a dip in the ground. Love it when a fall is justified.

    Congrats on being in a state to have a fiancee who's also 'brothers' with Mister Rogers!

  14. HA! Thanks! Mr. Rogers AND the dude who was in charge of the band on the Rosie O'Donnel Show (I can't remember his name and don't care enough to look it up)

    Small world indeed. My office mates were very proud of me today when I came in NOT having broken anything over the weekend. It's sort of a weekly thing where they check to make sure I'm still ambulatory... my life is sad.

  15. Wonder where that Rosie O'Donnell dude is now. He seemed so pleasant and patient.

    Congrats on a successful weekend! I fell in the street AND ruined a new white-ish shirt with Korean food. Serves me right for being so daring.

  16. I liked this a lot, certainly more than Hatchet, which I thought was way overhyped for what it was. I like Green's more restrained stuff like this and Spiral.

  17. Hatched did get a tad overhyped and adored as something original, when really it was just another dead teenager movie that happened to not be a remake or sequel to anything. I enjoy it, but I don't see how it's done anything for the genre. I definitely think this was his best so far. I guess there's something incredibly likable about Green as a director, especially since his first three movies are all of the horror vein, but executed with such different approaches. Frozen does seem to be the most accomplished.