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Name: Aaron Nio Q.

Villaflor
Name of Film: Ice Castles (2010)
Director: Donald Wrye

Introduction
Do you love what you are doing? Then, if you do, you got to make a way onto it. This is
the mindset of the main character, Alexis Lexie Winston. Ice Castles (2010) is a remake film
dating back from 1978. During those times, Ice Castles is a hit. It was even nominated in the
Oscars. And this is one of the reasons why they remade it.
Ice Castles is a romantic drama film directed by Donald Wrye, starring Taylor Firth as
Alexis Lexie Winston, a young figure skater; and Rob Mayes as Nick Peterson, a hockey
player. Donald Wrye, the director, is also the one who directed the Ice Castles (1978). The
2010 remake was not premiered in the big screen, instead it was sold in DVDs straightaway.
Taylor Firth is a professional figure skater, so for ice skating aficionados, this is a must watch
film to boost your enthusiasm on skating.
Although Ice Castles is a remake movie, I mean, it is supposed to be better and more
beautiful than the original film, still, its just an okay-movie. Its beautiful but its not perfect. I
know it is mandatory in Hollywood to remake all movies that was nominated in the Oscars but
even if Ice Castles the old and the new is directed by the same director, I think, the director did
not give his best. I recommend you to watch this movie but I dont want you to expect something
big.

Plot Synopsis
Alexis Lexie Winston is a girl from the small lakes of Iowa. Her boyfriend, Nick
Peterson, share the same interest in skating. Lexie dreams of becoming a titleholder figure skater.
With the help of a family friend, Lexie enters a regional championship. And there she is
discovered by a prominent figure skater, Aiden. He said that Lexie lacks training but her skills
are better compared to her age. At her fathers protest, she moves from Iowa to train to the
renowned Broadmoor World Arena in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Lexies life there is not
peaceful, especially her relationship with the other girls. They all feel envious of her because of
the special attention of the media and Aiden to her. She and her coach make a lot of effort to
make her known in the skating world. Lexie proves that she has what it takes. And after a lot of
trainings, at last she qualifies to enter the senior championship level. Although she performed
well and the attention of media and fans had increased, her love life is in vain. She and Nick are
having long-distance relationship problems. And this is affecting her.

On a sponsors party, Lexie felt that she needs to be left alone. Not far from the reception
is a frozen lake. Lexie skates there and the guests and her coach notice her. They all look through
the window. Lexie, feeling ruined about her relationship to Nick, attempts a difficult triple jump,
but lands on the hard ice of the lake. That phenomenon changed her path to her goals in life.

Themes
Ice Castles is a story of love, tragedy and dreams. I know youve heard of this kind of
story before, choosing between love and your dreams with a little mix of tragedy but still it used
its themes in a different attack. Love is natural in every film, dreams made this movie interesting
but we know its already a cliche but when you mix it with tragedy its much better, better than
nothing, though.
Lets talk about love. We all know that love in every film is almost like a requirement, but
in this movie, it didnt start like an old Cinderella film. Actually it didnt really start. It just came
out in the movie abruptly. What I like about love in this movie is the strength of their
relationship. The coming back of love from an obstacle. It just tells me that, true love never gives
up, true love returns. Of course, there are times when there will be complications but through
time and through the real bond of love, nothing is impossible. True love will prevail.
The second theme of this film is about achieving your dreams. In this movie, there are
many factors that hinders the main character from achieving her dream, to be the a champion
figure skater. First is love, second is the tragedy and the third are the people around her. We all
know that when you are not yet known in a field, it seems like everyone doesnt care what you
do even if you are better than the one currently famous in the same field of yours. The tragedy is
the climax of this story. It is where youll say, What now? I dont want to raise a spoiler alert
here but remember this phrase, Never give up, ever!

Visual Elements
Now, we will be talking about the acting, the backgrounds, the locations, the camera
shots, costumes, angles, sequencing, lightings, editing, SFXs, stunt acts, the cinematography to
be concise.
Lets start on acting. Well, I know that Taylor Firth, the one who acted as Lexie, is a
professional skater but she has never done any acting before. When I was watching the film,
sometimes, there are confusions that I feel when Taylor is showing her facial expression. I can
say that Lexie is acting to impress, not to portray the real main character. That is the only
negative thing I can comment to her. She is a great skater. I like her skating skills.

What I like about the locations is the small-town feeling of the first scenes. I know that it
is very hard to shoot during winter season, especially if you are aiming for a hard-iced lake. Its
very hard to shoot during winter because it is time-limited. You only have 3 months or more if
you are lucky. There is not much noticeable in the locations of the scenes.
Camera shots and angles are one of the most important thing in film-making. What I like
here are the shots taken while skating. The dolly gripper is very good because it tracks the
subject in a fast but unnoticeable way. That is very important, you should go where the eyes of
the viewer wants to go. And that is what exactly the cameramen have done. One thing I dont
like on this element is the fact that they only used crane shots when shooting on high places.
They couldve used drones or higher crane shots. For me, it feels quite limited. Another thing is
the quality of the camera. It doesnt look like it was just made 6 years ago. It looks like its been
10 years since they shot the film.
I also wanted to criticize the combination of lightings and costumes especially during the
photoshoots of Lexie. A silver and shimmering costume would not and never fit the flash of the
camera. Its very hard for the eyes. For me, it just made the movie look older because that was
the common mistakes of movies during the old days. I cannot really comment on their style of
dressing because this movie is a 2010 movie and we all know that the casual dress during those
times are quite older when you look at it right now.
You might also be confused about the scoring of the judges. Even if we saw that Lexie is
far better than other competitors she, at first, didnt get high scores. My theory is that, maybe, the
editor together with the director cut some scenes that contain some minor flaws of Lexie while
skating. Those minor flaws are important because it brings transition from being an untrained
figure skater to a professional skater. The movie used very little amount of SFX and those are
only used during the skating scenes mainly on Lexies last skating competition.
On the side of the sequencing, I can tell you that Im quite disappointed on the last part of
the film. It left me saying, That was it? This film couldve had a more beautiful ending. It
couldve been better. After her last skating competition, I expect to see media like newspapers,
T.V. reports, or radio broadcasts telling the whole world that Alexis Winston competed in a
flawless way even after the tragedy I cannot mention. They can even show her biggest
competitors face when she knew what happened to Lexie. There is no resolution on the side of
the antagonist.
If you combine everything about cinematography of this film, it is fine.

Conclusion
The film is not a great movie nor a bad movie. It is just an okay film. I love it but it
doesnt mean its perfect. There is nothing extraordinary about this film but for ice skating
enthusiasts, as Ive said earlier, it is a must see movie. This movie will raise your spirit,
especially during times when you are about to give up all your dreams or your loved ones. If you
ask me if I will watch this movie again. Yes, I will because what I like about this film is iceskating. Ice skating is what makes this film special. Since skating is rarely seen in our country, I
am definitely gonna watch this again, not the whole movie though, only the scenes when Lexi is
dancing on the ice. And the music, Looking through the Eyes of Love, it is beautiful. Much
have been said already, if I were to rate this film at a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being the highest. Im
gonna rate it 6.5 for the fact that it is already a remake movie, supposed to be more beautiful, and
there is nothing extraordinary in this film that I cant find on other movies.
This film taught me something I already know but I always forget. Never give up. As
long as you live anything can happen and always have a positive mindset.

MOUNT CARMEL SCHOOL OF INFANTA


Brgy. Ilog, Infanta, Quezon

Senior High School Department


MOVIE REVIEW
ICE CASTLE
Directed by Donald Wrye
In partial fulfillment of the requirements for the subject:
21ST CENTURY LITERATURE FROM THE PHILIPPINES
AND THE WORLD
Submitted by:
MR. AARON NIO Q. VILLAFLOR
G11-Sword of Elijah

Submitted to:
MR. ARIAN FERL M. SABALBERO
Instructor

September 30, 2016

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