4.5/10
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Below Zero (2011)

Jack, a writer who goes to a remote meat cooler, where his agent has set it up for him, to be locked in for five days so he can meet his deadline while he writes the ending to his book.

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Penny / Paige
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Morty / David
Sadie Madu
Dee Hanna ...
Mrs. Hatcher
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Storyline

Based on true events, BELOW ZERO is a thriller with a 'Fargo' feel. It is the story of 'Jack the Hack', a less than average, but once successful screenwriter who now faces writer's block. Desperate to meet a career-saving deadline and lock out the distractions of his troubled life, Jack arranges to be left alone and locked inside a meat cooler, with only vegetarian meals and his imagination to inspire him. As the temperature drops, the lines between reality and fiction blur, and Jack's script comes dangerously to life. Will he make the most important deadline of his career? Or is Jack 'just a hack'? While writing the script, the actual screenwriter and producer of BELOW ZERO, Signe Olynyk, arranged to have herself physically locked in the meat freezer of an abandoned, remote slaughterhouse. That's partly how this story developed. It was filmed at the same location. Written by Anonymous

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There's nothing scarier than a blank page.

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Thriller

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for language and some bloody violence | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

18 September 2011 (Canada)  »

Also Known As:

Das Schlachthaus  »

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Budget:

$1,200,000 (estimated)
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User Reviews

 
Creatively, intelligently different
10 April 2012 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

BELOW ZERO is a thinking person's mystery horror. A scriptwriter, Jack the Hack, has writer's block and arranges to be locked in a slaughterhouse freezer until he comes up with a script. Believe it or not, scriptwriter Signe Olynyk tells me she also did this when writing the movie. On screen, the story is dramatised for us as Jack writes, so we have two on-screen narratives: Jack's world (think, Fargo) and that of the alter ego in his story (think Saw). As he considers various re-writes, the story within a story changes. But a third story is at hand: that from Jack's own psyche. His basic plot, surprise surprise, is someone accidentally being locked in a freezer, in a building owned by a serial killer. But, if you can stand back from the subsequent on screen gore, there's maybe time to work out what's really happening! This Kaufmanesque horror story keeps you on your toes all the way through. Signe doesn't recommend new writers try the freezer trick at home, but she does run a scriptwriters' workshop, Pitchfest (www.pitchfest.com), and invites any budding writers reading this to get in touch with her.


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