September 22, 2003
Taking a note from Cape Fear's Max Cady, Cold Creek Manor's Dale Massey (Stephen Dorff) is another disturbed country-fried freak intent on driving a nice little family nuts. In this case, the titular location is the former home of Massey and his now-missing family, and his father before him. Having grown up under the iron fist of an angry, strict dad, Dale has grown up into a repressed psycho, dishing out knuckle sandwiches to anyone daring to cross him. That includes his bartender, trailer-trash girlfriend (Juliette Lewis) or the Tilson family, who just moved from the big city into the Manor.
Cooper Tilson (Dennis Quaid) is a documentarian worried about the welfare of his kids; his wife Leah (Sharon Stone) agrees and they get out of New York City. They happen upon a sprawling mansion and its unkept lawns and buy it on the spot. The locals don't take kindly to strangers though, and watch over the Tilsons like vultures. Soon enough, the original lord of the manor returns - Massey - but instead of angrily staking his claim to the place, asks for a job fixing 'er up. The confused, glazed-over Cooper agrees.
This allows Dale to do his worst in an attempt to make the family move out. He plants snakes all over the house, moves in on Cooper's wife, and murders the family pony and leaves it floating in the swimming pool. All the while, the Tilson's only friend is the local sherrif, a young woman who just happens to be the sister of Dale's trashy girlfriend.
Through it all, Cooper works on uncovering the mystery surrounding the house. Dale's family is nowhere to be found except in the countless movies and pictures still inside. And there is the abandoned car in the woods. And, oh yeah, there's the giant hole with the dead bodies out there too. (Don't prospective buyers check out their land before moving in anymore?) Dale hopes to add the Tilsons bodies to the mix, but winds up dying inside the house he grew up in. Convenient, just like much of the movie.
INTELLIGENCE - 5: Didn't exactly cover his tracks when it came to his prior offenses.
POWER - 6: Strong enough to be your friendly neighborhood handyman.
VILENESS - 8: Dropping dead horses and snakes around the house is his idea of dropping hints to the Tilsons.
SWAY - 5: Charismatic with the locals, but not with many others.
PURITY - 9: Killed his family. Killed his dad. Nobody's safe around this guy.
PHYSICAL - 4: Scruffy and mysterious, he can show off his physique for the ladies too.
Posted by Destro at September 22, 2003 03:34 PM