Hey gang, Valkor here. It’s the start of a new year with a new bundle of everything TOV related to sift through – from tech, films, gaming and animation, all the good stuff that helps to keep this site afloat and you guys either filled with fun stuff or know to shy away from it. To start things off, let’s take a look at Dylan McDermott’s (Burning Palm) latest film – Freezer, which plays in the “man in box” genre of film. But is it as good as “Buried” or does it fall flat? Major spoilers ahead, so go with caution.
In “Freezer” McDermott plays a mechanic named Robert, who awakens to find that he’s trapped in a meat locker. No reason is given as to why he’s there, but as soon as a couple of Russian mobsters, who speak no English, enter the scene, does the plot begin to unravel. It would seem they want money. What money? Robert doesn’t have a clue. That is until Alisa (Yuliya Snigir) enters the scene, then it’s revealed that Robert, or someone that looks like him, apparently stole 8 million dollars from these mobsters. And they want it back – badly, to the point of leaving him in the meat locker to freeze to death. After they leave him alone, Robert finds a cellphone; on the receiving end is Detective Dorian (David McNally), who was looking for his partner Sam (Peter Facinelli - Loosies). But since Sam didn’t answer, Al knows there’s something up. He pries into Robert’s background, but before the conversation could get any deeper, the mobsters return, destroying the phone. Now it’s all about finding the money and they’ll do whatever it takes to get it. But the big question is – does Robert really know about the money and he’s faking it by claiming not to know anything. Or he really doesn’t know anything – at all! He better know something and fast because that meat locker ain’t gettin any warmer.
There’s a big twist towards the end, but it’s something that could easily be pieced together. I was actually debating whether or not to post the twist, simply because it was so obvious. But I’d rather not and you guys “might” enjoy it that much more.
Like most “man in box” films, Freezer stays almost entirely within the confines of the meat locker, with more stuff that can be accomplished inside than in Buried or Brake. However, this one has a much happier ending, but does that make for a better film?
Freezer isn’t a terrible film; in fact it’s quite decent. The plot fits the genre, while not being totally claustrophobic (eventually things move outside the box), plus McDermott isn’t left carrying the entire film by himself. There’s a great deal of tension and suspense, not to the extreme that I would have liked but enough to keep your attention through the short and well paced 82 minutes of film. The big twist/reveal won’t stun many (again, it’s pretty obvious), but it helps to wrap things up in a satisfying way. I thought McDermott played the part great but I would have much rather have seen the role of Robert given to Facinelli as he seemed a better fit. However he scores points for the banged up role of Detective Sam. and Yuliya Snigir gets a PerfectView nod as well as kudos for her performance as Alisa. Freezer is just an average thriller that’ll hold keep you watching until about mid way through.
What annoyed me the most about Freezer is how the characters do too much dancing around Robert to get info on the money that he may or may not know about; they’ll enter the freezer, interrogate him a bit, leave and repeat. No new info is given as to the whereabouts of the money – all that’s tossed around are threats and wisecracks. The mobsters know that Robert knows where the money is and it's beyond important to them, so why not torture the shit out of him to make him talk? THAT would have made for a more interesting film. I guess leaving a man in an ice box to freeze to death is torture enough?
Sam is beat to shit!
Freezer DVD (as well as blu-Ray) gets a wide release on January 21st. It’s a pretty decent thriller worth at least one sit through. However, if you’re looking for something more bite to it, then you might want to look elsewhere. As it stands, out of TOV 5 stars, Freezer doesn’t get the cold shoulder, but it does get a 2.5.