Chill Factor

Friday, January 1, 1999

There is little doubt that Action was one of the best shows to be cancelled in the game-show fueled mass extermination of series that occurred in 1999, but if it did possess a flaw, it was a tendency towards overly broad humor. Nowhere was this more apparent than in the episode "Lights, Camera, Action," in which we get to see the production of the film Beverly Hills Gun Club. The one scene they spend the episode shooting is a weak parody of a typical Joel Silver film, but is so grossly over-the-top that it is hard to reconcile with the enthusiasm displayed for the script. While watching this episode, I said, "No one would possibly spend millions to make a film this unspeakably bad."

And then I saw Chill Factor.

The pitch for the film pretty much sums it up (48 Hours meets Speed). Johnny Depp (played by Skeet Ulrich) kidnaps Don "No Soul" Simmons (played by Cuba Gooding Jr) so they can be chased around by your usual Alan Rickman clone. Usually these sort of rip-offs have some vaguely interesting twist to them (Die Hard on a boat, Rio Bravo in New York, Hamlet in Africa with lions), but this one relies on the rather flimsy concept of Speed on an ice cream delivery truck. Flimsy.

Sadly, the filmmakers seemed convinced that this "high" concept would be enough to sustain the entire film. Who needs a script?

Fortunately, this film provides what should be the final, much-needed example of black/white buddy film homoeroticism for thousands of self-impressed film majors. This film should allow these poor students of the world to stretch what would otherwise be a mere term paper into a senior thesis, or, if they are lucky, a book.

Rating: D+ (Lower End of Mediocrity)

Reviewed by Padgett Arango
The Hills Have Eyes 2

Hostel Part II

Six Degrees



Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip


The Hills Have Eyes

Love Monkey

Out of Practice

Head Cases

Crunchwrap Supreme

The Exorcism of Emily Rose

Batman Begins

Garden State


13 Going On 30



Kill Bill, Vol. 2

Line of Fire

We Shall All Be Healed

Happy Family

Arrested Development

Love Actually

A Minute with Stan Hooper


Karen Sisco

Stop All the World Now

Cold Case



Joan of Arcadia



Lost In Translation

House of 1000 Corpses

Bubba Ho-Tep

Darkness Falls

Pirates of the Caribbean

The Amazing Race

Treasure Island



To Hit Armor Class Zero

Without A Trace

8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter

Life With Bonnie

JalapeƱo Cheeseburger

The Mothman Prophecies

Happy Campers

The Man Who Wasn't There

Kiss of the Dragon

Josie & the Pussycats

Hedwig and the Angry Inch

Dr. Pepper

Know By Heart

Waking Life


Thirteen Ghosts

Earthlink presents Chang and Eng

New York and Country Bar


Motivation and Water Tower Grammar

Crossing Philly

Makeout Club


The Gap

The Abolition of Work

3000 Miles to Graceland



The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea

Diesel Sweeties

The Cold Six Thousand

The Grilled Stuft Burrito (Rebuttal)

60 Second Wipeout

The Patriot

Grilled Stuft Burrito



Frankenfinger E.P.

One Force Down


Both Our Secrets

Happy Birthday Captain Columbus!

Fight Club

Whatever It Takes


That Skinny Motherfucker with the High Voice?

Joe Dirt

The Veggie Whopper

Taco Bell Nachos


Godzilla vs. Monster Zero

The Terror of Mechagodzilla

To The Center


American Psycho

The Del Shredder

What Lies Beneath

The Cheesy Gordita Crunch

Bring It On

Chill Factor

Alan Mendelsohn, the Boy from Mars

Bad Company

The Blair Witch Project

Hyacinths and Thistles

Lake of Dracula

We'll Have a Time

Home Depot

Snow Day

The Virgin Suicides