Cold Prey begins with a group of friends setting out to get at some untouched powder in a remote mountaintop location. When Morton, a member of their party, breaks his leg, the group takes refuge at an abandoned ski lodge. While the friends try to deal with Morton’s compound fracture, to the best of their ability, they begin to discover that the lodge may not be as abandoned as it first appeared. Before long, they are running (except for Morton) for their lives in a desperate attempt to outmaneuver a psychotic and nearly invincible killer.
It’s important to note that Cold Prey starts out seeming like a formulaic slasher. At first glance, it seems like it could very easily be unexceptional. It takes a lot of inspiration from films like Halloween. However, the uniqueness of the killer, the extra attention that is paid to character development, and the dynamic between the characters elevates this film to a level of greatness.
The script is partly to thank for the film’s success but that only goes so far. The performers and the film’s director Roar Uthaug are responsible for bringing the screenplay to life in such a captivating fashion. In less capable hands, Cold Prey could have been a completely run-of-the-mill slasher film. The combined efforts of a talented director and capable performers resulted in an atmospheric horror thriller with a cast that the viewer wants to cheer for. Instead of cheering for their demise, you actually want to see them survive and it’s surprisingly sad to see them picked off by the killer.
The killer in Cold Prey has a very interesting backstory that makes him more dynamic than the typical slasher movie villain. When we learn what he has endured, the viewer feels a level of empathy for his plight.
Ingrid Bolsø Berdal is absolutely phenomenal as Jannicke. She is among the coolest final girls to star in a slasher film in recent years. Jannicke is tough and has to come to the rescue of her male companions multiple times throughout the course of the film. She’s also loyal to her friends and values their well being every bit as much as her own.
Cold Prey makes great use of its singular location. 90 percent of the movie takes place in a confined area but the fast pace keeps the lack of additional locations from becoming tedious. There’s never a dull moment in Cold Prey. Getting to know the characters is enjoyable and the cat and mouse dynamic between the group of friends and the killer is highly intense.
The effects in Cold Prey are very well executed. Morton’s compound fracture is realistic enough looking that it actually made me sick to my stomach. The splatter effects are very good, as well. The FX are practical and the effects team didn’t skimp on stage blood. In fact, here are buckets of blood spilled throughout the course of the film.
If you haven’t seen Cold Prey, it is a fantastic slasher film that’s well worth seeking out.
Director(s): Roar Uthaug
Writer(s): Thomas Moldestad
Stars: Ingrid Bolsø Berdal, Rolf Kristian Larsen, Victoria Winge
Studio/ Production Co: SF Norge AS
Length: 97 Minutes