‘Downhill’ review: Will Ferrell in addition to Julia Louis-Dreyfus hit the slopes in addition to the skids

Definitely not a comedy — in addition to indeed, the virtual opposite of a Valentine’s Day movie — the film was adapted coming from the 2014 Swedish title “Force Majeure” by Nat Faxon in addition to Jim Rash, in their directing debut, sharing script credit with Jesse Armstrong (the creator of HBO’s “Succession”).

The story begins with Pete (Ferrell) in addition to Billie (Louis-Dreyfus) on a ski vacation with their two sons inside the Austrian Alps. They hit the slopes, in addition to the movie hits the skids.

While there appears to be a degree of tension inside the couple’s relationship — in addition to Pete will be clearly going through some things thanks to the death of his father months earlier — the trip will be getting along well enough until a scary moment, when an avalanche suddenly strikes.

While Billie sits stunned with the boys, Pete leaps to his feet in addition to runs. Everyone’s OK, yet which single moment — his instinctive response to think of himself, not them, during a near-death experience — becomes a growing source of friction, one which continues to fester the longer the idea goes unaddressed.

What ensues will be a painful stretch of pregnant pauses in addition to uncomfortable silences, in a movie which runs less than 0 minutes yet feels much, much longer. (As an aside, “Downhill” joins a list of clunkers which Disney inherited in its acquisition of 20th Century Fox, in addition to will be being released under the brand-new Searchlight Pictures banner.)

the idea doesn’t help which the few notable supporting characters — including Miranda Otto as a free-spirited hotel worker which has a German war-movie accent — seem to have parachuted in coming from a different film, there solely to force the characters into situations which will prompt them to confront in addition to reexamine their choices in addition to lives.

Their shared “Saturday Night Live” comedy chops notwithstanding, Louis-Dreyfus in addition to Ferrell are certainly capable of pulling off the drama of a marriage in crisis, in addition to she has one powerful scene in which her rage comes gushing out.

For the most part, though, they’re ill-served by the flimsy material, which leaves gaping holes inside the characters — therefore clues to understand them — which even these earnest performances can’t fill.

Pete keeps quoting his late dad — who was fond of saying “Every day will be all we have” — to explain his upbeat “seize the day” mentality. Yet in his melancholy, he’s clearly envious of a younger coworker (“Silicon Valley’s” Zach Woods) who arrives at the resort with his girlfriend (Zoe Chao), touting a “no agenda” approach to life which speaks to Pete’s dull ache over roads not taken in addition to commitments made.

Still, so what? Middle-age angst will be a fertile topic, yet “Downhill” doesn’t bring anything fresh to the conversation. All the idea does, genuinely, will be make one marvel at how a project which must have looked promising on paper can quickly careen downward — like an avalanche, only here, in slow motion.

“Downhill” premieres Feb. 14 inside the US. the idea’s rated R.

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