Wednesday, 22 June 2011

Review : Cold Prey 3

Oh sweet Jesus. Where do I begin with whats wrong with this film? COLD PREY and its sequel were excellent examples of the slasher movie. Those two films were about as tight as slasher movies get unless they're being directed by John Carpenter in 1978. The first one was, for all intents and purposes, the first horror film to come out of Norway, and it was pretty much a perfect example of how this sub-genre can be made to work in the right hands. It had it all. An amazing location, that echoed THE SHINING's Overlook Hotel, a cast of very capable actors, a very tight script and a fearsome 'masked maniac'. Along with its equally excellent sequel that took place directly after the original, over one long night in the hospital where we follow the previous film's, 'final girl', (HALLOWEEN 2 baby!), it took the slasher away from SCREAM's post modernism and placed it firmly in the realm of reality. Both films are lean, tight and scary thrillers. In fact, viewed back to back, these two films make a perfect three hour epic that hits all the right notes. Now on to part three in the franchise, although I'm loathe to call it that...

First of all, its a prequel. Yep, a prequel. You know how us horror fans just LOVE our prequels. There's nothing more satisfying than having our boogeymen demystified by some hack director edging for a quick buck. Leatherface has a skin problem apparently, Myers is a redneck, and Freddy was a fucking gardener before he got Kentucky fried and inexplicably decided to hang out for all eternity in a boiler room. Now its the turn of COLD PREY's iconic killer to be dragged through the gutter. And it only gets worse.

Everything the first two films got right, this one gets so very wrong. The likable, relate-able victims from those films are replaced by stock characters who barely register as human, despite being onscreen for twenty or so minutes before the shit hits the fan. Honestly, these guys are about as memorable as my last drink binge. Its not the actors faults, although they ain't one of them Laurence Olivier, its the godawful non-script that sinks any chance of arousing interest. Who directed this thing... George Lucas?! I wish I could have at least hated these kids, much as I did the cast of the FRIDAY THE 13TH remake. At least then I could have been rooting for their inevitable slaughter. But no, these boring bastards left me with one desire and one only, to fast forward the damned movie to the undercooked gore scenes.

Warm Prey
And what of the brilliant location of the original? A desolate, abandoned hotel deep in the snow covered mountains of Jotunheimen. Well, its in the film for all of two minutes. The group are heading there, you see, but within two minutes of arriving decide its too run down and swiftly decide to sleep in the fucking woods! So long, awesome location, then. Its like having a busload of kids head to Camp Crystal Lake, only to settle for a motel when they find the accommodation lacking! Whoever thought this was a good idea should really rethink they're career choice. Not to mention that the film is called COLD PREY 3. The reason for this title, is that the location is supposed to be freezing. Not so for these plucky assclowns though. They happily wander the woods, day and night, wearing only t-shirts in what should be sub zero cold. They even go skinny dipping. I've rarely come across anything this stupid, even in the slasher genre. It wouldn't be so bad were it not that this ungodly mess follows such excellent and respected movies.

This is only a COLD PREY film in name. Its obviously been released under this title to make easy money, don't be fooled into thinking that the heart and intelligence that went into the first two films has carried over. This whole thing stinks of cynical cash cow. I'm pretty mad about this, as alongside HALLOWEEN, BLACK CHRISTMAS and THE BURNING, the original and its sequel are at the top of my all-time slasher list. So here's what you do, you avoid this shit like your sanity depends on it. After all, why taint the memory of all the great work that came before it? Its just a shame some things cant be unseen, but thankfully, its so damn dull that I'm forgetting its existence already. Thank the gods of horror for small favors.

2 Money Grabs out of 10


  1. For those wondering, I'm not posting a link to purchase the third films, as my morals wont allow me. Buy the first two, I'll feel better about myself ;)

  2. Welcome HBA Member
    Sorry for the delay. Please check to make sure you are on the master list on the right side of the HBA Main Page...

    Jeremy [iZombie]
    HBA Staffer

  3. Thanks Jeremy. I checked and Im prod to say Im on there. Its a brilliant thing your doing. Shine on!

  4. While I appreciate the review (I loved the first two films, and have no interest in seeing the prequel now), I must point out that the original title Fritt Vilt translates to "Open Season", as Cold Prey is just the retitling for the west. So the change of locale effecting the title is less of an outright mistake and more of an unhappy oversight.

    1. Thanks, Cal...I would never have known any different. Feel a bit silly now. Well spotted!

      Btw, your not missing much by skipping this thing. You made a wise choice ;)