A vicious serial killer is targeting prostitutes in Vienna, Austria. A tough young woman from Turkey, who works as a taxi driver, witnesses one of the murders and becomes a target. The police are of no help, so she must stop him herself.
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Özge Dogruol is a young woman who left Turkey to find a better life for herself in Austria. She finds work as a cab driver in its capital, Vienna, but frequently faces hostility and intolerance from both her customers and the local police. In order to vent, she takes kickboxing classes and never backs down from a fight, even with police officers, if necessary, to make things right. Meanwhile, the city is plagued by a sadistic serial killer with seemingly religious motives, who targets, tortures and murders a very specific kind of prostitutes. On her way from work one day, Özge witnesses the murder of her next door neighbor, the serial killer's latest victim, and sees the killers face. Unfortunately, he notices Özge as well and tries to kill her. Özge turns to the police, where she's met only with skepticism. Failing to kill her, the killer goes after her extended family in Vienna next, which forces Özge to find a way to stop him herself, and her only ally is a lone police detective ...
I love kick-ass women who can surely kick any ass, but this one...such depth, so much history and so little words, she is the ultimate antihero hero. I loved her.
Get your blenders on, this movie is all parts: Death Wish, The Transporter, I Spit on Your Grave, The Bourne Identity, Rear Window, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and Taxi Driver, just to name a few. But, don't worry; the film just borrows from them. The real story is: the Fantastic Not-Angelina Jolie.
There is a central plot thread, but it's almost overshadowed by the lives and drama of Not-Angelina Jolie. The basic story: troubled loner (with very good reasons) witnesses a brutal murder from her bathroom window. That would be bad enough, but the killer surely sees her see him and the threat is on. Almost comically - but really, sadly, she spends a good chunk of the film trying to crash at someone else's place over and over only to remember why she didn't involve herself with these people since they previously wronged her.
With no one to help her and the killer stalking her, she's pretty much on her own. I wouldn't worry too much, though. Not-Angelina Jolie can seriously mess you up.
She's not Supergirl. She's absolutely human even though she's got a pretty good shield: drive. What she's been through in her life - and you'll learn pretty much all of it from extremely clever writing and the show/don't tell acting and scenes - nine out of ten people couldn't handle. This makes her thoroughly interesting and captivating.
Now, it does help that through a lot of the drama here, there's some awesome action scenes and an incredibly satisfying final act. Contrary, some of the slower and definitely predictable scenes do muddy the waters. Mercifully, they don't linger on too long and we get back to the character worth watching the whole movie for: Not-Angelina Jolie, of course.
Final thoughts: I love extremely strong characters in cinema, namely smart female leads with the odds stacked against them and their fists/wits prevail. So much so, I constantly give passes to other flaws, plot-holes or clichés in the films they're in. So, know this: Cold Hell isn't perfect. It does have one unintentionally hilarious "Oh, that's where he is!" revelation that I wouldn't knocked down the movie more so, but damn, they did correct themselves almost instantly and all is forgiven.
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