Cold Creek Manor (2003)
Director: Mike Figgis
Juliette Lewis/White trash hoe
A pussy-whipped husband (Quaid) and his used up castrating wife (Stone), take the rug-rats out of the city to move into a lavish, yet beat up, farmhouse in the country. When the previous owner shows up (in the guise of a tanned Stephen Dorff), having just finished a stint in the Pen, things go sour and only get worse from there.
Wait a damn minute here, was it me or did the trailer for this flick make it seem like it was a horror film? A haunted house jamboree, perhaps? Well, trust me my friends, this POS (piece of shit) is not a horror helping, it’s more akin to a now played out 90’s like thriller a la “Pacific Heights” or “The Hand that Rocks the Cradle”, minus the thrills or hints of smarts.
Early on in "Cold Creek Manor", a particular character is introduced. At that point, it took me a hefty 2 seconds to tie up every narrative point offered, find a motive and figure out what could really be going on. But I dismissed my “Stove Top” theory, believing: “There’s no way in hell a movie released in 2003 would take such an easy, by-the-numbers and over killed route-- this baby has to be about something else!” Well, after what seemed like hours of tedious buildup, clumsy drama, half-baked relationships, predictable plot conventions and ridiculous attempts at suspense (what was that “snakes” scene all about?), the flick finally pulled down its pants to reveal its raison d’etre and it was pitifully my overly simple theory come true. BEUCH!
Man, Hollywood really must think were imbeciles! You expect me to lap this crud off the floor?! YOU LAP IT UP AND STOP WASTING MY TIME! I’ve had farts with better handled substance than this trite crap. Not only was this shite overly predictable, but every single freaking chance it had to go deep into its more interesting “meat” (like the reason behind the madness, there was potential there) was totally ruined by its lazy demeanor, giving me nothing to care about. And it didn’t stop there, hombres! Once the film’s “non-secret” was officially revealed, all I had left was waiting for its lagging ass to catch up with me. You see, I effortlessly second-guessed every single one of this film’s next moves right down to the location of its last hoorah and the manner in which its “Thriller 101” ending would go down. Yeah, it was real exciting to sit through….real exciting! SNORE! And to make matters worse, the last block also double-downed on plot holes the size of Sharon Stone’s flabby buttocks and beyond idiotic moves by the leads that were obviously committed to FORCE the storyline to its foregone conclusion. Sing it with me: “FUCK THIS MOVIE!”
It might've helped out if the leads in this assembly line product were likeable and developed, but sadly that wasn’t the case either. Cooper (Quaid) was a one-note lush, a pussy dominated by his plastic surgery junkie looking wife. How can I respect that? And he was also an inconsiderate mook at that! I don’t know about you fine people, but if the previous owner of my loft popped up one day and I happened to own all of his old family pictures by default, I’d volunteer to give them back to him in a heartbeat! Well, not good old Coop...he actually keeps the guy’s precious personal belongings with the intent of making a documentary on his family. How about you give the guy his shit and mind your own goddamn business! What a jerk! Somebody needs a lesson in ethics. As for Queen Leah (Stone), well, all I got out of her was that she was a selfish, stuck up cold beeyatch. She’s the kind of dame that would cheat on her husband and smoke her superior’s beef jerky to get a VP job. Wow, what a great couple they made! The Wimp and the Tramp. And you want me to root for these twats??? KISS MY ASS! I wanted them to die…A LOT!
Now, since the directing was also ho-hum, the suspense nil and the score incredibly overbearing (pipe down junior), this trash only had one saving grace and that was Stephen Dorff doing what he does best: playing an aggressive Stephen Dorff. I gotta hand it to the dude, yes...he’s done this shtick before, but he does it so damn well. He was intense, menacing, charismatic and emotionally torn. His “heavy” character actually had more facets than the leads and I was rooting for him like a rooster plowing away during mating season! And let’s face it, I can think of worse ways to get my smiles than by witnessing Stephen Dorff bitch slap Juliette Lewis to high heavens. That was the highlight of the film for me, no doubt...I laughed out loud. That one star and half rating you see tagged to this review IS for Stephen Dorff alone.
On the whole, "Cold Creek Manor" stank up the joint. This non-thriller was so see-through that it made “Saran-wrap” seem opaque. (sings) Burn manor Burn, Arrow Inferno, Burn manor Burn!!
We get blood and glimpses of corpses. Nothing to see here.
Dennis Quaid (Cooper) did what he could with the thinly written role he was given. Sharon Stone (Leah) didn’t always ring true and was also not given much to play with. Stephen Dorff (Dale) got to do his thang, ran with it and had a blast with the part. He was a treat to watch. Juliette Lewis played white trash hoe, what else is new.
T & A
We get Sharon Stone’s ass in undies and the ladies get a cut and tanned Stephen Dorff shirtless. The ladies get the better treatment on this round.
What happened to Mike Figgis? "Leaving Las Vegas" was so good and he once directed a decent thriller called "Internal Affairs". What’s he doing behind this crud? Although he sported a couple of kool cam moves and evoked some minor atmosphere here and there (loved the flashlight bit), the bulk of the film was mostly pedestrian. Nothing standout here, directing wise. Cash that check Mike!
OUCH! What an incredibly overbearing score! It tried to bully me into thinking that the more animated moments in the film were mucho exciting, but it didn’t work. Coupled with those damn new movie theatre vibrating seats, all it managed to do was piss me off. NOTE: WTF is up with those vibrating seats anyways? Are they supposed to accentuate my cinematic experience? If I want something massaging my balls every time a loud noise erupts, I’ll call my landlady! AND WHERE” S THE OFF BUTTON ON THAT THING???? Urg...
I didn’t think I’d see a lousier movie than "The Order" this year; I was dead wrong. Cold Creek Garbage takes the lead thus far. Apart from the unintentional laughter that this mess provided, the film was just Blah. Blah script, Blah acting, Blah pacing, Blah directing…Blah Blah Blah. Sure, every time Dorff "Dorffed out", I wanted to clap but if that’s your fix, see him do the same thing in "Blade" or "City of Industry" instead. At least those films are half decent and not an insult to one’s intelligence. "Cold Creek Manor" was just another indication that Hollywood must really think movie audiences are complete morons! Take your Cold Creek back La-La-Land and shove it where you obviously got it from in the first place…your ass!!
This film was at one time titled “The Devil's Throat”.
This film was shot in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Screenwriter Richard Jefferies wrote this flick. He also wrote the horror films "The Vagrant" and "Scarecrows".