Cold Comfort

January 26, 2012

Liam Neeson likes to punch a few wolves every morning before breakfast.

In “The Grey,” opening Friday, Liam Neeson fights wolves in snowy Alaska. When it snows in D.C., we fight bad drivers, which is infinitely worse. Still, snow often makes for an excellent setting, as these movies prove.

Fargo
Yes, most of the 1996 film takes place in Brainerd, Minn., but the snowy, endless expanse that surrounds Marge (Frances McDormand) as she tries to solve a kidnapping gone wrong makes us wonder why anyone would live in North Dakota.

The Shining
Why do we storm the stores looking for bread and milk when the flakes start to fall? Because Jack Nicholson proved in 1980 that being stuck with only liquor makes Jack a dull, homicidal boy.

Mystery, Alaska
Nobody saw this 1999 hockey movie, which is too bad, because it’s pretty good. In it, the townsfolk skate on the sidewalks during winter, which we think is a sign they’ve been in the cold too long.

Doctor Zhivago
This 1965 classic shows that Russia is a cold, cold place to be in love. Also, the weather sucks.

The Ice Storm
What makes horrible weather better? Key parties! This 1997 film — set in 1973 — follows relationships that are just as cold inside as the weather is outside.

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