Dr. Mark Stitham
as told to Nicole Kato
Where and with whom did you see the movie?
Koolau Stadium with Chris and Anna Strawn.
Overall what did you think?
Bottom line: Save your money and watch the DVD. For anyone in Hawaii who does see this movie, you’ll never complain of the cold winter nights again!
Without giving away the ending, what was one of your favorite scenes?
Crossing the gorge of a river using a makeshift line. We all were on the edge of our seats.
On a scale of one to four stars, what would you rate this film?
My companions and I all gave it only ★★ out of ★★★★★. It’s very uneven with moments of genuine excitement broken by long stretches of mawkishness. The editing should have been tighter.
What did you think of the cinematography?
For a big-budget film, there are technical problems. Liam Neeson’s photo-double wasn’t a close enough match to not be obvious. And the limits of CGI are on the screen: Some of the wolves didn’t look real. My friend quipped that he knew the snowflakes were CGI because he saw two that were alike!
Was the message/theme clear?
Plain and simple survival flick.
Did it remind you of any other work in film?
This is a survival movie set in the Alaskan wilderness. The plot is derivative of Agatha Christie’s Ten Little Indians and even more of Predator, with wolves instead of aliens. A blatant ripoff is a scene set in a river at the end that was done first (and much better) by Paul Newman in Sometimes a Great Notion.
To whom would you recommend this movie?
Fans of Liam Neeson and adventure flicks.
Did any of the actors stand out?
The movie was well-cast. Neeson can carry an action film, but I think he does better work in more period pieces like Rob Roy.
Did you identify with any of the characters?
Growing up in northern New England, I could certainly identify with people being very, very cold! It’s why I moved to Hawaii 33 years ago.
Did the soundtrack contribute significantly to the film?
The soundtrack became noticeable during the sappy scenes with lugubrious strings.
On a different note, what’s new with you?
I continue to practice psychiatry and pursue my hobby of acting. No luck with Five-0 so far, but I’m still in there swinging. I just spent the holidays with my daughters in India, which was fascinating.