Written by: Matt Molgaard
Directed by: Rob Connolly
Cast: Joel Kinnaman, Tom Holland, Percy Hynes White
I’ve become an enormous Joel Kinnaman fan. The guy projects compassion and leadership in sharp fashion and every film to feature the man has proven impressive. Hell, he even added a heavy dose of spice to the dicey antihero flick, The Suicide Squad. Kinnaman is a true talent, and he’s the lone reason I felt compelled to check out Edge of Winter. Which for the record turned out to be an excellent flick, through and through.
The story is a familial piece that sees Kinnaman’s character, Elliot take his boys out for a little target practice. Elliot is estranged from his wife, so his time with his boys is limited. While on their little outdoor escapade he learns that his time with his boys is about to take an enormous blow as his ex-wife is planning to move to London, kids in tow. The thought of losing all interaction with his children immediately sends Elliot into a dark spiral. When the three find themselves stranded in the deep snow – a result of a behind the wheel mishap – Elliot really, really sinks into the darkness, his behavior becoming increasingly unpredictable. Will the three emerge from the snow safely or does a much bleaker future loom just around the bend?
As a father I can tell you in complete honesty that Edge of Winter is both terrifying and heartbreaking. Watching Elliot lose all grasp of logic is deeply disconcerting, and what he subsequently puts his children through is gut wrenching. The fact that Kinnaman absolutely slays as the unhinged father only amplifies the impact of the narrative.
But Kinnaman gets plenty of onscreen help from the young Tom Holland and Percy Hynes White, who both turn in riveting performances that hint at tremendously bright futures in this business. While the ensemble is small, each participant is nothing short of electrifying.
Edge of Winter looks amazing and succeeds in delivering perfect psychological horror. The cast couldn’t possibly be stronger and Connolly and co-scribe Kyle Mann craft a seamless script. While many will recognize this pic as a dramatic thriller as opposed to a pure genre film, I can see and feel the terror in the story. It’s every bit as frightening as it is heart breaking.