Yes, Norwegians. With one of the highest human development index rankings in the world, Norwegians are born entitled to government healthcare, free college tuition and oral sex on demand. It is the Miss Naughty Niceypants of countries. Even tolerant Socialist slut Sweden has been known to occasionally reach over, grab Norway by the ankles and give it a swirly.
So when the illustrious Stacie Ponder over at Final Girl assigned her fellow horror bloggers the Norwegian horror film Cold Prey to review for her Film Club, I had expectations as low as the Norwegian wind chill factor.
Because Norwegians aren’t scary. Need proof? Consider Norwegian rap music….
And last but definitely least, consider their most lasting contribution to Rock and Roll… a-ha…
I'm sorry, but no primal emotion can be evoked by a man in high-wasted Mom jeans with a gay-porn-power-bottom-over-the-shoulder-come-hither-stare. (I am also quite certain that this picture must be used somewhere for denim-aversion therapy.)
So Norway - not scary, not sexy. Charming, sweet, safe, perhaps a bit nipple-hardening in the weather department. But nothing from there could possibly disturb the core hypothalamus of my lizard brain.
But, would Cold Prey change my mind? Would this little plucky slasher movie have me trembling in fear at the sight of a masked Norwegian madman?
Cold Prey opens with a young boy being chased through the snow. Soon after, we are introduced to our horror movie douchebags. To make things simple, lets call them Horny Couple, Sensible Couple, and Annoying Understandably Single Redhead Geek.
I'm not a betting man, but if I was I would have placed my marker on the female half of Sensible Couple to be the survivor. She has that not-too-sexy, but hey-I’m-not-a-Lesbian way about her that just screams Final Girl.
The Remote Place Where The Douchebags Will Get Slaughtered is an abandoned ski lodge. Once there, all of the slasher movie rules will be adhered to as if The Great Santini was hovering over the director and ordering a drop-and-gimme-20 every time he strayed.
Yes, the slut will be slaughtered first, weapons will be ignored or dropped, guns will run out of bullets at the worst time, the killer will keep walls of newspaper clippings to make it easy for our survivors to figure out his identity, and victims will cower inside of small spaces instead of mounting a likely successful joint assault on the killer. And by killer, I mean this guy…
Yes, we are meant to believe that 5 able bodied extreme sports enthusiasts are unable to take this cuddly fella who looks like either an extra from the pre-CGI cantina scene in Star Wars or the loneliest furry at the convention. Maybe he just needs a friend…
Horror movies are made or broken on two criteria for me: (1) Do I care about the people who are in danger and (2) Has my disbelief been suspended to the extent that I actually believe they are in danger?
Unfortunately, Cold Prey failed on both fronts for me. It’s not a badly constructed low budget horror movie, I guess. It’s just nothing special.
And though Cold Prey did nothing to instill the scareds in me, a seed of Norwegia-phobia may have been inadvertantly sparked by this guy...