Three friends become stranded on a chairlift in the freezing night at a deserted ski resort.
Let me say upfront, if you ski or snowboard, add a star. I hate the cold so have no interest in winter sports, which keep’s the film’s premise at arm’s length. Further, if you have a pet, maybe add half-a-star, as the film features an emotional crescendo involving a character realizing—should they die—no one will know to feed their pet. I’ve never owned a pet, so again, at arm’s length.
While I may have struggled to connect with the movie, I bought all the performances. This proves crucial as the film takes its time to introduce the leads and their interpersonal dynamics. We watch them banter, finagle a discount lift pass, and enjoy time on the slopes. Then an unfortunate but plausible set of circumstances strands them as the resort shuts downs.
Here the film’s location photography shines. That’s a real chairlift at a real resort in the real cold. That said, after a gruesome second act event, more shots including the ground below would have amplified the desperation. But I suspect this was a technical and budgetary bridge too far.
I also would have preferred a subtler score. The aforementioned crescendo scene proves a prime example of the music proving intrusive and bordering on schmaltz. A nitpick, but this proves a hard movie to fault. The commitment and effort of everyone involved shows through, but it’s also Green’s third released feature and he’s still growing as a filmmaker.
- Starz / Anchor Bay, 2010↩