I’d been looking forward to this one. I’d wanted to go see it when it came out in theaters, but it was a busy time for me and the movie came and went fairly quickly. Honestly, after seeing it last night, I’m glad I didn’t get the chance. It isn’t that the movie is bad. It just isn’t pay-full-price-for-it-at-the-theater good. I’d give it a grade of B-. Worth a watch, but better enjoyed on home video.
The biggest deficiencies? The script is sorta jumbled. I don’t necessarily mind this–I’m a huge David Lynch mark–but you have to be careful when you take this approach not to lose your audience, and the storyline, the “narrative focus,” of THE SNOWMAN isn’t always easy to follow. The far bigger weakness, though, is the ending, which is something awfully close to a deus ex machina. It left me with a scowl on my face as the credits rolled.
As for strengths, the acting is top-notch across the board; with players like Michael Fassbender, J.K. Simmons, and Val Kilmer (gamely playing here despite having to have his lines dubbed–badly–due to throat cancer), it would almost have to be. And cinematographically, the movie is gorgeous to look at, as cold, crisp, and gray as winter itself. (And for those who might be wondering it’s a proper Horror movie, there’s enough vibrant red blood juxtaposed against all that blue-gray-white to more than meet the criteria. Personally I would have preferred it had the killer put his victims inside of snowmen, made them into snowmen, instead of just lopping off their heads and replacing them with snowman heads, but that’s just me.)