The Thinking Man’s Stupid Action Flick
Looneymanthegreat - wrote on 07/04/14
Snowpiercer is one part stupidity, one part brilliance and one part insanity. It combines the art house and the slaughter house in ways I’ve never really seen before. Its plot has been done to death (It’s basically just Elysium on a train,) but the movie has a unique style and tone that never takes itself too seriously, and keeps the pacing going. It’s a very flawed movie, but it’s also a breath of fresh air in the midst of the big budget summer blockbusters.
There is a lot of stupid in Snowpiercer, some of it intentional, some of it regrettably unintentional. Yet the movie is never significantly harmed from this, in a way it adds to the realistic/surreal tone of the whole thing. On moment you’re in a gun battle against a psychotic kindergarten teacher, the next your having a deep discussion of the impact of starvation on an overpopulated community. It never feels whiplash-ish; each moment, no matter how dissonant from the last, feels like a natural progression of things. The two mind approach to Snowpiercer is totally intentional, and is mostly kept under careful control.
The acting is good, the cinematography, is good and the tone almost has an Evil Dead 2 thing going on. The only thing that really bothers me is its plot. Like I said; this is basically just Elysium on a train. I wouldn’t mind this “Haves” vs. “Have nots” plot so much if it hadn’t been the plot of every other freaking science fiction movie that’s come out over the past few years. It’s really frustrating to me that a movie with such an original vision also has an over recycled plot.
That said Snowpiercer is definitely my personal favorite “dystopian haves vs. have not” science fiction movie. Its message is actually quite different from most movies of its kind, and it never feels unoriginal unless you think about it really hard.
Maybe the strongest aspect of Snowpiercer is its ability to keep the audience guessing. In Captain America 2, I knew how it was going to end before I even entered the theater; but with Snowpiercer you’re never sure what’s going to be through the next gate, and you never know who is going to live and who is going to die. It’s a feeling that you don’t get in movies much, the feeling that anything could happen, and what’s happening is real, not fictional. It makes you forget your watching a movie at all.
Snowpiercer is worth seeing for anyone who likes movies, and want’s to see more action movies that feel wholly original. It’s basically the thinking man’s stupid action flick and I mean that in the best way possible.