The Chill Factor (1993)

A good few years before X-Factor, quite a few years after Max Factor, and, probably at the same time of the Krypton Factor, neophyte director Christopher Webster was considering making ‘The Chill Factor’, and, I, for one, am glad he did so; because, quite frankly, if he didn’t, this singularly entertaining horror film would have remained a mere figment, and with all the good will I can muster, any figment, no matter how well intentioned will play on my Sony region 2 Blu-ray player. If you are an avid fan of figments, I mean no offense. 1993 was never a landmark year for horror, while in Poland they used a more effective rennet for their delicious slender cheeses, as today, the halcyon era of the cheapie slasher was long over, and for this tumescent reason alone it might be long overdue to reappraise the not-exactly mighty, but fragrantly satisfying ‘The Chill Factor’. It is a glorious incongruity indeed to find Christopher Webster’s grossly unheralded splatter movie available on this enticingly pristine Blu ray presentation. Is it worth the wait? Well, that entirely depends on how fully functioning one’s guileless horror gland is; mine is uncommonly virile, thrustingly appreciative of any lovingly unearthed, long-forgotten historical horror opus from the days when film meant just that, film. Today, one is just as likely to endure the palsied retrograde guff of some narcotizing nerk, shot a digital telling-bone, rather than the crimson gory of glorious celluloid. Like any form of art, good, bad or indifferently made, its perceived beauty lies wholly in that of the beholder, but for those who can find pleasure in the likes of Don Dohler’s fustily freaky ‘Fiend or Wayne Berwick’s mercurially malevolent ‘Microwave Massacre’ should embrace Christopher Webster’s supernatural, ski slope-set shocker with all the tenacity reserved of an especially welcome drunken conquest. ‘The Chill Factor’ aka ‘Demon Possessed’, like Maplethorpe’s photography, or that second plate of Blow fish Sushi, isn’t going to be everybody’s chalice of fulsomely frothing grue, but for those with stalwart stomachs and a refined, lurid sense of fun will much to amuse themselves with here. This is a rare film you can laugh ‘with’ or ‘at’, ambidextrously amusing, and that alone raises it above the mire of plagiarized grindhouse grot clogging cinema’s sinless sewer of today.