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Cold Meat

An effectively chilling and unexpected tale of survival, “Cold Meat” will keep you on the edge of your seat, shivering with anticipation.

Cold Meat

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Cold Meat is a different type of “man versus nature” survival thriller.

A chance encounter leads to David (Allen Leech, Downton Abbey) saving a waitress from her abusive ex-husband. When he gets back on the road, he finds himself in a blizzard. He soon finds himself stranded in the snow, fighting the cold and other elements.

It is the type of story that has no middle ground. Films about life-or-death situations either offer a captivating tale about a person’s struggle to survive against all odds, or we get something that is ultimately a dull viewing experience. There is usually a compelling scene or two as the protagonist does whatever it takes to remain alive, but there isn’t a lot of room for shocking twists.

However, this film manages to subvert those expectations. Once David becomes trapped, Cold Meat keeps surprising its audience.

The first twist is stunning, completely turning the movie on its head.

Just when everyone watching has come to accept what is going on, director Sebastien Drouin (who also helped with writing duties) throws in another wrinkle that changes that dynamic.

It is a hectic pace that would be impossible to keep up the whole time. Wisely, things slow down the rest of the way.

The second act focuses on character development. Cold Meat does this excellently while still keeping the tension high. Due to the circumstances, no one is ever safe, and there are some scenes that raise the anxiety level even higher.

While most of the film takes place inside a car, the action will sometimes take place outside. These are always done in clever ways that never seem forced or silly. A strong sequence near the end slightly changes the setting and provides insight into David.

This type of script does not demand much in the way of special effects. The scenario may be extreme, but it is also a grounded one.

There is some great make-up work in Cold Meat.

Faces are a ruddy red, and icicles hang from eyelashes. Though there is never the claustrophobic feeling that is created by default in similar releases, the cold looks brutal and becomes another character.

Cold Meat does a great job of escalating from no dialogue to almost having too much. Things are most interesting when the conversations peer into the mind of a killer.

In an odd touch, the film introduces heavy themes constantly but never delves too deeply into anything. Sometimes, it works by adding more mystery about motivations. Other times, it leads nowhere.

This is surprisingly common. Even though actions from earlier lead to the car wreck, the beginning is rarely brought up. David makes an occasional comment, but it sometimes feels like it is from a completely different movie.

Ultimately, it does not affect the rest of the film, but it is strange how disconnected things feel.

Nothing will negatively impact anyone’s viewing experience, however. Despite some missteps, it all manages to come together in the end.

Strong performances paired with an engaging story ensure Cold Meat remains an entertaining watch.

Overall Rating (Out of 5 Butterflies): 4
Cold Meat will be available on digital platforms on February 26, 2024. 

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