Tremors: A Cold Day in Hell is the sixth sequel to Tremors (1990), one of the best monster B-movie ever made, that spawned a few worthy made-for-television movies.
As some of you might know, I’m a big fun of the franchise: I don’t consider any of them to be great films, but for what they are I enjoy most of them, as I made quite clear in a blog post about my guilty pleasures. Nevertheless, Tremors 4 (2004) and Tremors 5 (2015) let me down quite a bit, so I was rather concerned A Cold Day in Hell might have been a disaster.
Fortunately, it really wasn’t. Actually, in comparison to The Legend Begins and Bloodlines (the 4th and 5th instalments), A Cold Day in Hell is the best straight-to-DVD Tremors to date.
The story is rather simple and quite familiar: after an experiment in the Antarctic has gone wrong, Burt Gummer (whose role is reprised by the always-amusing Michael Gross) is asked by the FBI to go in there as a “Graboid expert” of sort. Together with his son Travis (Jamie Kennedy) they decide to take a chance and end up being stuck in a facility surrounded by Graboids. Those Graboids, however, have evolved into even deadlier killing machines due to some silly experiment tried on them by a shady organisation.
Whether you’ll this flick or not, is rather simple to predict: if you’re a fan of the first three Tremors, you’d most likely enjoy A Cold Day in Hell, otherwise you’re not going to have fun with it.
The best part about Tremors 6 – I’m just going to call it like that because typing A Cold Day in Hell makes my fingertips tired – for me is Burt Gummer: he’s badass, entertaining, he spits out more motherfucking-swear-words than Samuel L. Jackson in his prime. I do really love the character. Also, in comparison to the previous movie, here Jamie Kennedy is very entertaining, he gives a solid sidekick performance.
The story, copy-pasted from the original 1990 movie and just translated to a different location, is unimaginative as hell but makes for funny scenes and hilarious situations.
The creatures are surprisingly well-made too: the CGI used for them (in combination with practical effects… kudos for that!) is not bad for a no-budget B-movie.
As per flaws, the acting – besides Burt and Travis’ characters – is subpar at best; some jokes really don’t work, at least for me; the “plot-twist” half way through the movie is laughably stupid, even for a Tremors flick. Although these flaws are somewhat severe in other contexts, for a B-movie they shouldn’t affect your viewing experience.
There is, however, one thing that bothered me quite a bit: contrarily to the first three movies in the franchise, Tremors 6 is released straight-to-DVD: that means that, in comparison to made-for-television films, it shouldn’t have many restraints when it comes to verbal and physical violence. Nevertheless, this flick felt quite tame, with the gore reduced to a minimum and the insertion of jokes for the whole family: I wish they went a bit further with the inclusion of a few gory sequences and more unapologetic one-liners.
Overall, though, this is a decent addition to the Tremors universe, one that goes straight away into my guilty pleasure list.
Tremors: A Cold Day in Hell 6/10
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My review is also available on IMDb – Tremors: A Cold Day in Hell