‘Centigrade’ Movie Review: Snowstorm Thriller In Need Of Some Heat
Thank you, thank you – it really is quite a good pun. If you’re looking for more, I recommend you check out the headlines for other Centigrade reviews. In fact, check out the reviews themselves, too, as I genuinely can’t imagine that I have anything novel to say about this film.
The latest feature from Brendan Walsh stars Vincent Piazza and Genesis Rodriguez as Matthew and Naomi, respectively, touring around Norway (by car? in winter??) to promote the latter’s new book. One night, Matthew pulls the car over to sleep and the two wake up, completely snowed-in.
As cheesy as the premise is, it doesn’t promise that Centigrade is going to be a bad film. It is, after all, in the legacy of other small-setting flicks like Buried, Locke, or even Hitchcock’s Rope. Unfortunately, Centigrade is lacking in thrills as much as it is in conceptual strength, and cracks in the ice begin to appear rather quickly.
Not only is Naomi pregnant, she’s also a closeted drug addict. Not only did Matthew lose his job, he also lied to Naomi about it. A snowed-in car is hardly the appropriate place for any of these reckonings, and all of it feels like Walsh cruelly squeezing as much drama as he can out of his relatively weak premise. There’s something more than a bit off about both performances as well, but the staccato nature of the script prevents me from being able to adequately place blame.
By the end, Walsh clearly wants us to bask in the strength of the human will – a difficult thing to do, given that we’re never told how long they’re in the car, exactly how much food they have, or any other genuinely relevant details. The film simply isn’t claustrophobic in the way it wants to be – actually, why stop there: it’s difficult to say the film is anything that it wants to be.