Review: Frozen DVD

STUDIO: Anchor Bay | DIRECTOR: Adam Green | CAST: Kevin Zegers, Shawn Ashmore, Emma Bell
RELEASE DATE: 9/28/10 | PRICE: DVD $29.97, Blu-ray $34.99
BONUSES: commentary, featurettes, deleted scenes; BD adds an additional commentary
SPECS: R | 93 min. | Thriller | 2.40:1 widescreen | Dolby Digital 5.1/Dolby TrueHD 5.1 | English and Spanish subtitles

RATINGS (out of 5): Movie | Audio | Video | Overall

Three young skiers are stranded on a dangling ski chairlift as the night begins to fall in Frozen, Adam Green’s chiller movie that offers a scenario most skiers and snowboarders have undoubtedly imagined at one time or another.

It’s a nifty little idea that smacks of those ABC Suspense Movies of the 1970s in which the hero would get stuck in a cable car, or an elevator, or a department store prowled by attack dogs. Frozen also summons up the same flavor of fear as the site-specific 2004 white-knuckle independent film Open Water. (Just substitute that film’s sharks circling in for the kill with Frozen’s pack of wolves gathering below.)

Writer/director Green (Hatchet and its just released sequel) definitely makes it, even if there are some lapses. The inherent problem with a more-or-less real-time time thriller is in keeping the story propelling forward while not losing the suspense and thrills. And at times, Frozen’s peaks aren’t high enough to fully lift us out of the valleys.

The cast — Kevin Zegers (Wrong Turn), Shawn Ashmore (X-Men: The Last Stand) and newcomer Emma Bell — is fine but not sterling, though in their defense, there are long stretches of dialog that simply aren’t engaging. But when the suspense and terror crescendo (and they do at least three or four times, courtesy of frostbite, razor-sharp ski-lift cables and those darn wolves), the three actors deliver.

There’s an extensive package of special features, including a lengthy making-of piece that reveals the logistical difficulties and tricky weather that the cast and crew had to endure to make the film (which did not use any green screen effects). The Blu-ray edition contains an additional exclusive commentary with Green, cinematographer Will Barratt and editor Ed Marx.


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About Laurence

Founder and editor Laurence Lerman saw Alfred Hitchcock’s North by Northwest when he was 13 years old and that’s all it took. He has been writing about film and video for more than a quarter of a century for magazines, anthologies, websites and most recently, Video Business magazine, where he served as the Reviews Editor for 15 years.