One of the biggest shames in the entertainment world is when thrillers aren’t thrilling. You go into something expecting some suspense and it doesn’t deliver. If you want a good (or bad) example of this, check out ‘First Snow.’
Jimmy (Guy Pearce) is a salesman whose car breaks down in New Mexico. What else is there to do in New Mexico besides seeing a psychic? That’s exactly what Jimmy does. This crystal-ball gazer (not literally) is Vacaro (J.K. Simmons) and tells his customer that he will have some good fortune in the near future, but beyond that, he is uncertain. His safety is assured until the first snow, after which, danger may or may not befall him. After a few good things happen, this vague prediction spooks Jimmy who becomes concerned about an old ghost from his past returning to town. The only people who are of any comfort to him are his friend/business associate Ed (William Fichtner) and his girlfriend Deirdre (Piper Perabo).
Can Jimmy learn from his past to save himself? Is there actually anything for him to worry about? Is anyone still reading this?
In word, the film is boring. It amounts to Jimmy driving around, talking to people and getting a little paranoid. Occasionally, he checks in with Ed to vent. A gun is brandished in a few scenes, but little comes of it. Something does happen in the climax (thank goodness!) though, even that isn’t as eventful as you might hope. The promise of suspense is almost completely unfulfilled. We are left to admire the arid, desolate scenery which actually does look quite nice.
Pearce and Fitchner have a good chemistry and Perabo is okay to watch, not that she has a lot to do. It’s a different role for Simmons, that’s for sure.
Special features include: just some previews.
‘First Snow’ might be for you if have a lot of time to kill and the patience for a story that spins its wheels for an hour and a half. Not I, good sir (or ma’am), not I.
Rated R 102 minutes 2007
‘First Snow’ is available to rent/purchase in Allentown, the Lehigh Valley and beyond.