Even though it’s Thanksgiving night, Mike is still working on the case as well as dealing with a stroppy daughter and his wife.
While this goes on, we as the viewer, already know who the killer is. Hospital worker Carl (Dallas Roberts) goes looking for hookers desperate enough to work out in the cold and isolated November conditions.
As the film progresses, it becomes apparent that he is not just your usual killer. In his basement, where he keeps the girls who he doesn’t kill, he’s developed a sick and twisted “Daddy” relationship with the victims.
Just when Mike thinks he’s getting closer to finding some concrete evidence, his personal life gets in the way of his work as his daughter Abby (Mae Whitman) goes missing after an argument with the mother. So now he’s on the trail to find her. But now the ante is up as further investigation reveals that it could be the very same person they’ve been after for 3 years is also responsible for Abby’s disappearance. This sends Mike into overdrive, dropping all professional restraint in finding his daughter and the killer.
Now, if you’re a fan of Cusack, you should like this as he is his typical self in this movie. Carpenter provides good back up as the partner, once again proving her worth as a solid actress and Roberts gives a chilling and unsettling performance as “Daddy.”
The story isn’t so great at first as the film is at a mediocre level . It’s not till after 40 minutes or so that it starts to pick up. Towards the end of the film Whitman‘s character of Abby comes into her own also, and we get to see a better performance than that of a simple moody teen. However, the last 15 minutes is what I enjoyed the most.
I have to honest here and say that I actually watched the first half of the movie a couple of months ago, but I was interrupted and it wasn’t till last week that I watched the rest of it. That said, I was quite surprised by the twist ending, but maybe if I watched the whole film I might have seen it coming. I was also watching the second half of this my PC, in the dark and with headphones in. So the part that made me jump out of my skin was probably made more effective by this! Anyway, I enjoyed the end product and thought it was an above average horror/thriller.