TORONTO — The U.S. northeast is getting slammed by a winter storm and many parts of Canada are coping with punishing windchill and snow.
It could be worse. At least we’re not freezing and battling vampires, fending off hungry wolves, or trying to decide which one of our friends to eat first.
Here to put the icy grip of winter into perspective are 12 bone-chilling movies. (Not surprisingly, 10 of them were filmed in Canada.)
Turn off the lights, cover yourself in a blanket and enjoy any of these snowy flicks that — like the weather outside — are frightful.
THE THING (1982)
John Carpenter’s The Thing, based on the novella Who Goes There?, follows a team of people working at an Antarctic research station under attack by an extraterrestrial lifeform. It stars Kurt Russell and — except for the voice of Carpenter’s then-wife Adrienne Barbeau — there are no female characters in the movie, which was partly shot in Stewart, B.C.
THE THING (2011)
A prequel to the aforementioned The Thing, this one follows a team who investigate the discovery of an alien spacecraft — and one of its occupants — in the Antarctic ice. The creature comes back to life and wreaks havoc. The movie, starring Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Eric Christian Olsen, was shot in both B.C. and Ontario.
Only days before the end of her tour of duty at a research station in Antartica, a U.S. Marshal (played by Kate Beckinsale) is faced with investigating the appearance of several bodies during a brutal winter storm. Based on the comic book of the same name and filmed in Quebec and Manitoba, it also stars Alex O’Loughlin and Gabriel Macht.
THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW (2004)
Dennis Quaid plays a paleoclimatologist in Antartica who discovers a huge ice sheet has slipped away and set off a chain of weather events around the world. He sets out to save the world and his son, played by Jake Gyllenhaal, from the next Ice Age. Parts of this epic disaster flick were shot in Montreal.
THE COLONY (2013)
Canada’s Kevin Zegers stars opposite Laurence Fishburne in this futuristic tale shot in North Bay, Ont. Survivors of the new Ice Age, who live underground, find themselves being killed off by a group of cannibals.
Speaking of cannibals… this made-in-B.C. movie tells the true story of how members of a Uruguayan rugby team survived after their plane crashed into the Andes mountains in 1972. It stars Ethan Hawke.
WIND CHILL (2007)
Two college students (Emily Blunt and Ashton Holmes) are sharing a car ride home to Delaware during their Christmas break when they’re run off the road and forced to survive freezing temperatures and supernatural goings-on. Where’s CAA when you need it? The storyline and acting aren’t great but you’ll enjoy the B.C. scenery.
Before there was the animated Frozen, there was this low-budget live-action flick starring Canada’s Shawn Ashmore and Kevin Zegers. They must figure out how to survive after they, and Emma Bell, are stranded on a chairlift at a ski resort that’s closed for a week. Spoiler alert: One of them gets eaten by wolves.
THE GREY (2011)
Liam Neeson is a huntsman who must save six oil workers in Alaska after their plane goes down. What will kill them first — the cold or the wolves? Well, clearly the wolves haven’t seen what Neeson did to the kidnappers in Taken. Alaska, of course, is portrayed in this movie by Smithers, B.C.
WRONG TURN 4 (2011)
A group of friends on a snowmobiling trek get lost in a winter storm and seek shelter in an abandoned sanatorium (actually the Brandon Mental Health Care Centre in Manitoba) in this straight-to-video sequel. But wait, some of the former patients are still inside and not very happy with their overnight guests.
30 DAYS OF NIGHT (2007)
Residents of isolated Barrow, Alaska are being hunted by bloodthirsty vampires during the one month a year when the sun remains below the horizon. Can Josh Hartnett and Melissa George save the town? How many townsfolk will be alive when the sun comes back? And whatever happened to Josh Hartnett?
Filmed around Prince George, B.C., this movie stars pre-Homeland Damian Lewis as well as Thomas Jane, Timothy Olyphant and Jason Lee as friends stuck in a cottage in Maine during a blizzard. But, since it’s a Stephen King story, the group must fend off an alien invasion.