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The Manic Energy of Snowpiercer


Snowpiercer is set in a future where a failed climate change experiment has frozen the world and forced the last few hundred remaining survivors of the planet onto a life sustaining, globe traveling train, for the past 17 years.

While the bio and trailer aren’t exactly the most enticing, particularly in this day and age of the comic book spectacle movie, Snowpiercer effectivley zigs where others movies would zag and delivers some gripping surprises along the way.

Zach Evans plays Curtis, the somewhat reluctant and haunted leader of the lower class, back of the train dwelling citizens. After repeated brutish behavior in the name of social class, the back of the train citizens are determined to get to the front of the train and change their way of life.


John Hurt plays Gilliam, a mentor to Curtis, and the leader of a previous citizen revolt. John Hurt has the ability to chew a scene like no other, and recently his appearances have began to touch upon self parody. Here we are treated to a noticeably restrained performance, and he just delivers what is necessary for the scene without taking it over. He does a good job of building up the character of Curtis while retaining plenty of elder statesman refinement.


The initial antagonist of the picture of played by Tilda Swinton, and she displays a devious amount of enthusiasm in putting the poor, wretched, lower class citizens in their place.


Each scene of this movie is crafted well enough to both capture the moment at hand and leave an image or two along the way that you will want to take in a little further. It is great to see a movie where this end of the product has so much attention paid to it without the air of over direction that some auteurs can leave. There is a manic energy and weirdness to Snowpiercer that makes it a fun romp that isn’t easy to discard as something you have seen before.

Snowpiercer is directed by Bong Joon Ho, you may have seen his 2006 horror pic The Host. The cinematography here is on point by Kyung-pyo Hongm, the framing is really tight, the color and the angles are played to their strengths to bring you into the world of each scene.

Snowpiercer is one of the more satisfying recent films to see, as it delivers more than what you may have been expecting. Overall, it has got to be one of Chris Evans best life choices, and could be the start of an exciting American career for Joon-ho Bong.


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