The next Midnight Madness film on the docket was Marvin Kren's Austrian environmental horror flick, The Station.
A discovery inside a melting glacier in the German Alps could spell doom for the members of a nearby research team.
This was another strong horror effort from Kren, as he brought forth the same economized energy he gave us in his 2010 debut, Rammbock.
John Carpenter's The Thing was a clear influence here. I highly appreciated the emphasis on practical effects, which Kren used for pretty much everything he physically could. Also like The Thing, Kren clearly gave his design team the freedom to run wild. Similar to the alien in The Thing, the ecological terror of The Station assimilates the organisms it comes in contact with, leaving endless possibilities. I have no doubt that if the production had had more time & money, we would've seen many more creations than the six or seven that appear onscreen.
The ensemble assembled for The Station was also very strong, especially Brigette Kren as Health Minister Bodicek, who yes, also happened to be the director's mother! She was a breath of fresh air in this movie. Her character is one you may least expect to take charge of the dire situation in the film, but she does so effortlessly. I also have to mention that, again like The Thing, this film has some of the best dog acting I've seen for quite some time.
|Minister Bodicek (Brigette Kren) taking care of business.|
I also really liked the colour palette of The Station. It has the drab greys and browns you'd see from a mountain climate, but Kren often found ways to splash in some reds, which really popped onscreen. It certainly fit in with the film's original title above – which I much prefer – Blutgletscher or “Blood Glacier”.
Although The Station ends on a wildly absurd note, it's kind of easy just to laugh it off and focus on all that came before it. That's not something I was able to do for the similarly themed The Last Winter from a half-dozen years ago, so that speaks highly of the quality of Kren's film.
|Director Marvin Kren & his star (and mother) Brigette Kren.|
Even though there was really nowhere to go but up from the night before, The Station was a solid Midnight entry.