Welcome to Friday Night Flix, where there’s never a need to leave the couch or put on pants. Each week I’ll recommend an under-the-radar movie currently available on one or more of the major streaming platforms. They won’t all be classics, but every selection is guaranteed to be 100% watchable or your money back.
Blood Glacier (Netflix) is your basic global warming hand wringer horror. We’re spewing all those greenhouse gases and glaciers are melting, blah blah blah. But, like, what if those giant prehistoric ice sheets have a secret hidden inside them? And what if melting exposes a dangerous threat to our survival, MAN?
This is the basic conceit of the movie: Glaciers melt, releasing horrible nightmare organism. Scientist scramble for solutions, get fucking ruined, the end. It’s a shamelessly topical take on The Thing, what with its thawed out parasite, remote frostbitten research station and well-bearded cast. The twist is the organism here doesn’t imitate lifeforms in order to conceal itself; it knocks them up Alien style.
It’s strange to me that the creatures birthed as a result of this process are universally hostile toward all humans. It’s hard to imagine what kind of evolutionary advantage they gain by killing everything in sight. Wouldn’t they be better off focusing on reproduction rather than slaughter? These are the questions that keep me up at night.
At a certain point I realized (long before the characters) that this organism would be a complete world killer. Just drinking melt water with a few single celled critters in it is enough to start the process. The hybrid monsters pass on the infection with every bite or sting or what-have-you, as long as they don’t stupidly devour or otherwise kill the new host. This would most definitely be the end of all life on earth, yet our heroes spend the first hour debating whether they should call for help. Wilford Brimley is not impressed.
So why am I recommending it? As obvious as the premise is, you can’t deny it’s a solid idea. Despite all the slapped together visual effects and often disappointing practical puppets, it manages to show you just enough to be gross and occasionally startling. I also liked some of the cast, especially the Judi Dench-type politician who you think is early monster fodder but actually ends up being quite a badass.
Added Bonus: When a movie prominently features a battery powered drill with a two-foot auger attached to it, what are the odds someone will eventually use said drill to take a core sample of monster brain? ALL SIGNS POINT TO YES.