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  Let It Snow Ice Cold Killer
Year: 2020
Director: Stanislav Kapralov
Stars: Ivanna Sakhno, Alex Hafner, Tinatin Dalakishvili, Gia Japharidze, Tamri Bziava, Elena Turbal, Avtandil Chakhunashvili, Soslan Oniashvili, Gocha Vardidze
Genre: Horror, ThrillerBuy from Amazon
Rating:  6 (from 1 vote)
Review: Three years ago in the Georgian mountains of Eastern Europe, a tragedy occurred that ruined Christmas for one family. This was a popular skiing and snowboarding location, but one local girl was unaware of the dangers that could happen when taking part, leading to a crash on the slopes that left her unconscious. However, the two tourists who were responsible for the accident left her behind, believing her to be dead - well, she was eventually, dying of her injuries and exposure. Now, in the present, the resort nearby remains open, but that Black Ridge area has been fenced off, not that this prevents tourists from wanting to ski and snowboard it, and sometimes they can use bribery to do just that...

Let It Snow took its title from that famed Christmas tune, which does indeed crop up here in more than one form, but while it was set at Yuletide really it was more a winter's tale than a Christmas movie, for the seasonal business was only mentioned in passing and tangentially. Nevertheless, there is a market for horror movies exploiting the most wonderful time of the year, so you could imagine it would do fairly well during the winter months, especially when director and co-writer Stanislav Kapralov was so keen to show off the splendid mountain vistas he found for his locations. Cue multiple drone shots of the area around the Georgian resort put into play, something of a cliché now in rural horror flicks, it had to be said.

Though there were those who would tell you this was more of a thriller than a chiller (taking into account the temperature of the region it was made in, of course), since after a long time establishing the central couple's relationship which could just as easily have been sketched in initially to allow us to understand them better through their actions in a crisis, the plot resolved itself into a series of gruelling endurance scenes for one of the tourists. She was Mia (Ivanna Sakhno), playing a visiting American with her soon-to-be-fiance Max (Alex Hafner): he is the one who makes with the bribes to persuade a local to take them to the top of the otherwise forbidden Black Ridge, all so they can snowboard down it and have a romantic heart to heart at the bottom, which would lead into them planning for their nuptials.

Well, that's the idea, but you may have noticed from the year this was released that a lot of people don't listen to official advice and simply do as they please, which here may have been an unintentional warning to the viewer to be sensible or else, or more probably was sheer coincidence; nevertheless, it did resonate a little more in 2020-21 than it might have done in previous years. Yet if there were no characters in horrors and thrillers behaving selfishly and as if there were nothing that could harm them by risking this obviously dangerous situation, then the genre would barely exist, so if you wanted to continue enjoying them, you learned to cut them some slack. After all, there were characters who acted responsibly and got into terrible trouble despite that, just as there were those who were idiots who cause problems for themselves and others. This is a way of skirting around the fact there was not so much shocking here, but enough not worth spoiling for those who thought they might be into it. It was a film that looked very good for its means, it was true, though its idea of an alarming twist ending was a little underwhelming. Music by Alex Chorny.

[Signature Entertainment presents Let it Snow on 4th January 2021.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark

 

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