Monday, September 17, 2007

Movie Review: Wind Chill (2007)

Believe it or not, Wind Chill actually came to theaters in early 2007, though zero marketing effort amounted to what was probably negative business for the forgettable horror movie. It's a real shame that the movie isn't just a little better, as it offers two very good performances from the leads.

Wind Chill is about a college girl (Emily Blunt, best known for The Devil Wears Prada) who hitches a ride with a fellow student only to find that he might not be as innocent as he seems. When they decide (well, he decides) to take a short cut across a snow-filled road, they find themselves at the center of their own worst nightmares. After a car crash, the two bear witness to all kinds of strange activities, namely several nasty ghosts who lurk around the dark and freezing highway. Can they survive the night?

Wind Chill works as a psychological thriller, mainly thanks to the quality performances from Blunt and the resilient Ashton Holmes, whom you'll recognize from a few things. The two, who spend the first half of the movie arguing and bickering, have great chemistry together, and their "relationship" comes off as very real.

Unfortunately, the horror aspect plays like a weak version of The Shining. Director Gregory Jacobs clearly wanted to go the psychological route and deliver a trippy journey into Hell, but the ghosts come so sporadically and with so little climax that you almost forget that you're watching a ghost story. When the ghosts do appear, they are a bit creepy, but the movie never really feels even remotely scary.

Respect Wind Chill for its performances, but a little more horror could have made these a sleeper hit. As is, it will quickly be forgotten.

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