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maryann johanson, ruining movies since 1997

quick list: five cold-weather movies that feel great in an NYC August

It’s so disgusting today in New York City that it made me actually cry in frustration. After a few days’ respite from what the TV weather people call “the three H’s” — hazy, hot, and humid — today it was back to air so thick and still that walking down the street is more like swimming than it is like walking. But just thinking about a handful of films makes me feel a little better. Because baby, it’s cold in these movies:
Fargo
It’s not Frances McDormand’s pregnant cop bent over barfing into the Midwestern snow that is, for me, the iconic winter moment of this film. It’s the bit in which, after a silent breakfast with her husband, she trudges out into the predawn darkness and, seconds later, has to shout back a request for him to come on outside into frigid cold to give her patrol car’s frozen battery a jump. It sounds so cheerfully routine, as if this happens every day. It probably does.

The Empire Strikes Back
It is colder than space freighter full of Gundarks, or something, on Hoth. Which means really, really cold. Know what’s really funny? The 4/5 subway platforms at the 59th Street station smell as bad in high summer as the innards of a recently lightsabred Tauntaun.

March of the Penguins
Tuxedo-clad flightless birds huddle together for collective warmth and to keep their individual precious eggs viable over the long dark Antarctic winter. Sounds wonderful.

Groundhog Day
It’s so cold in Punxsutawney that time freezes.

The Shining
Why are they holed up in the hotel? It’s so lovely and snowy and cold outside…



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