“. . . nature is indifferent to us.”
The Last Winter is a horror movie about global warming… and with that, I believe at least half the audience has checked out. And that’s too bad. To me, scientific fact should not be something that you must decide to agree/disagree with based on your political affiliation. Global warming is happening – it is not the creation of the Chinese in an attempt to make money. You can disagree about what awaits the future of the planet and what level of crisis we’ve found ourselves in today, but scientific fact is not a matter of opinion, mmkay? And, you know, if nothing else: think of the polar bears.
Back to the movie: The Last Winter is about an oil team exploring the options of bringing a new pipeline to the Arctic. The lead oil man (Ron Perlman) clashes with the scientist (James Le Gros) about whether the ice is too soft to proceed with operations. And while they argue about science and mankind’s requirement for oil, members of the team begin to lose their way. People walk off into the snow naked… others bleed to death in their sleep… and still others lose their mind and turn violent. Is there something supernatural at work or is a hazardous gas leaking from the melting ice? Whatever the cause, they must get out of there before it’s too late.
With cramped interiors and icy exteriors, The Last Winter cannot avoid comparisons to John Carpenter’s The Thing. I’ve seen quite a few films that clearly took from The Thing (heck, I’ve written a book that owes quite a bit to the film), but The Last Winter’s similarities to the Carpenter classic are only skin-deep. It’s a horror film with a message on its mind, and it manages the story rather well.
The best scenes are played without dialogue, as creepy music and chilly visuals tell the story. Not everything works: I liked The Last Winter more as a vague mystery about humanity’s self-destruction and less as supernatural thriller. I also think that the film’s small budget fell short of its vision. But overall it’s a good film, a different film, and I’d recommend it to horror fans that are open to some scientific discussion.
Tomorrow: JeruZalem. With a Z. It’s on Netflix.
Writer of horror, science fiction, and dark fantasy. Lover of fiction and film. Lifelong Godzilla fan. Reluctant blogger.
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