Saturday, September 12, 2009

"Whiteout" (2009) - Movie Review

A female cop having trouble with trust issue (if my long time colleague turn a freaking gun against me, hell yeah I would not trust any one at all) is in the middle of a murder investigation when time, weather and people are against her. In the white land of Antarctica exists the research centre and Marshall Carrie Stetko (Kate Beckinsale) is out there for couple of years. We see bunch of mad Russians going insane mid air in 1957 guarding the “box” to the known destiny, deadly icy land and get buried there. Never double cross over the air with loaded weapons and lot of vodka crates. Even the people who do not want to double cross would kill each other for the liquor.

It is cold out there, really cold, very very cold because they makes sure to provide exhibit of how freezing it is. Apparently displaying the ambience temperature of negative 65 degree C over the screen does not let the audience know how much of the effect this weather has for the human body. With the storm approaching, there is a sign of a body in the middle of nowhere. Carrie and her friend and guide Doc (Tom Skerritt) go there and examine, identify and drag the body in the middle of a party.

The dead guy is a geologist from another post and when they call in the post, the contact person out there cannot say the details over the phone for some reason. How hard it will be to tell “There is a crazy killer out here for the “box” and I am the only one left. May be I will die by the time you reach but the dude you are looking is.....”. See very easy but Carrie has to go and get a one on one session with the killer who is the only one properly attired covering his face in the icy winter. But to be fair, the heart began to pump fast when the killer begins to chase Carrie, very well shot Dominic Sena.

Whiteout is the term when the storm in Antarctica happens, quite harshly to say the least. Ridiculously powerful and fast winds with the temperature and snow would blind, disable and kill any one in no time. To have a fight in the middle of it would be the best worst possible scenario. In a room with the studio people, that scene would have been the best pitch (pardon my inexperience though, this is only an assumption) but when the scene happens, no clue who hit whom (even when throughout the film every one have the face exposed to the deadly cold except the killer) and what is the strategy Carrie does to outsmart the killer.

“Whiteout” is not a terrible disaster but a creeping slow crash. The paranoia Carrie goes through with trusting no one is played in the audience. We begin to doubt the sudden and nice UN investigator Robert Pryce (Gabriel Macht) and the friendly Delfy (Columbus Short). I picked the right one and I was dead on both the times. If you believe they have stopped with one confrontation of the killer without a branch off or relapse, then you are just born in this world.

The movie had a good thing going which is to move around the places wherein it seemed claustrophobic serial killer plot would have been an approved blockbuster garbage. It goes from one location to another and in between buildings, because with the omnipresent killer as nature wanders around, each structure separated is isolated as islands. Hence there is a constant attempt to not fall in the cliche but the script does not hold together.

The puzzle gets simpler as the end is near. The film works as the progress bar in software installation and as the percentage increases, we solve the puzzle a bit more. The idea is to find out the answer together with the film but we are well aware about twenty minutes before the actual killer is revealed. “Whiteout” compared to its colleagues in the same genre is much better because the slasher films either gives out the suspense way out early or the suspense is as ridiculous as the victims in the film. “Whiteout” appears to have some work put in but cannot soar long enough to make the cold a little bit more of an entertainment.

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