Cold Fever | Movie Critic's Choice | Chicago Reader

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Cold Fever

Beginning in Tokyo in a standard screen ratio before expanding to 'Scope in scenic Iceland, this arresting, oddball 1995 road movie by Fridrik Thor Fridriksson--cowritten by producer Jim Stark (a longtime Jim Jarmusch associate)--is the first Icelandic feature to be released commercially in the U.S. (Nearly all of the dialogue is in English.) Strange, often funny, and occasionally beautiful, it concerns a Japanese businessman (Mystery Train's Masotoshi Nagase) who's planning a vacation in Hawaii until his grandfather (the late Seijun Suzuki, ace B-film auteur) persuades him to fly to Iceland during winter and travel cross-country to perform a memorial service at the spot where his parents died in an accident. His absurdist, mock-epic adventures involve both a spiritual quest and a comic travelogue--among the strangers he encounters are a murderous American couple named Jack and Jill (Fisher Stevens and Lili Taylor) and a philosophical, self-styled Icelandic cowboy (Gisli Halldorsson). Stark will introduce the screenings on Friday and Saturday at 9:45 and Sunday at 7:45. Music Box, Friday through Thursday, July 19 through 25.

--Jonathan Rosenbaum

Art accompanying story in printed newspaper (not available in this archive): Photo from Cold Fever.

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