How did I not hear about this movie until last month?
After scientists inadvertently cause an apocalyptic ice age, the last of humanity are forced to live out their lives on the Snowpiercer, a train which perpetually circles the globe. Well, it sort of runs over five continents or so, and never crosses the Pacific, but yeah—a train which perpetually circles the globe!
Snowpiercer (2013) follows Curtis (Chris Evans), a passenger who leads the mistreated poor from the tail end of the train in a rebellion to get to the front.
What’s awesome about the film:
There’s a whole lot of gritty, satisfying violence in this movie, if you like that sort of thing. It doesn’t get overly gory, as most of the blood-and-guts explosions occur off screen. The violence is also sometimes paired with an odd quirkiness, which is best represented by the scene where the good guys open a door to the next train car and are greeted by these ax-wielding weirdos:
The quirkiness also occurs outside of the violence through the brainwashed front end passengers who worship “the sacred engine” and Wilford, the creator of the Snowpiercer. Tilda Swinton’s performance is spectacularly disturbing as a sort of spokesperson for Wilford, and there’s a hilariously creepy scene with Allison Pill which I will not spoil.
Chris Evans does pretty well as a somber, brooding character. It took some time for me to adjust to him in more serious roles since I first knew him as a Freddie Prinze Jr.-spoof on Not Another Teen Movie (2001) and then as Johnny Storm on Fantastic Four (2005). After seeing Evans in Sunshine (2007), Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010), the Captain America movies, and now Snowpiercer, I have to say I definitely prefer Evans in . . . anything but a romantic comedy.
To be fair, the only romantic comedy I’ve seen him star in is What’s Your Number? (2011). To be even more fair, I watched that film dubbed in French with no subtitles.
What isn’t very awesome:
I could’ve gone with a different ending and, to be honest, it’s not a movie I’d watch over and over because it depends on action and plot-reveals which would get stale on a repeat-viewing. Overall, I really don’t have much to complain about. Director Bong Joon-ho (봉준호) and his team did a great job with Snowpiercer. Watch it.