Friday, April 17, 2015

Dead Snow (2009)

Normally, I'm not a big fan of zombie films. While I'll watch new Romero zombie movies just for sheer sentimental reasons, that particular breed of monster is not among my favorites. Once in a while a film will add something new and grab my attention, like giving them speed in the remake of Dawn of the Dead or treating them as pets in Fido, but usually hordes of lumbering rotting flesh with a taste for brains doesn't do it for me.

This film may be added to the exceptional list.

The basic plot is that a group of medical students led by Vegard (Lasse Valdal) go up to a remote cabin in the woods for some fun in the snow. After the obligatory scene of ignoring a crazy old man's warning about the area being haunted by the ghosts of disgruntled Nazis, the inevitable zombie invasion proceeds.

As I said, I don't watch many zombie movies, so the idea of zombies engaging their would-be victims in hand-to-hand combat was fun for me to watch. I don't see that very often outside of the The Evil Dead movies. And there is a clever blend of horror and humor that balances nicely without getting corny, which I really enjoyed.

Another thing that caught my attention is that the zombies were not altogether brain-dead. They were actually quite well organized and displayed the type of disposition that you would expect from a squad of Nazi soldiers.

The victims, on the other hand... well, let's just say that at one point they do manage to burn down their own cabin. But they have spirit and won't go down without a fight, so we'll excuse their utter lack of survival skills.

Speaking of survival skills, the one character that does seem to posses this kind of knowledge is conveniently the one who leaves the others alone in order to look for his girlfriend. Hilarity ensues.

This film also made the most frequent and inventive use of intestines that I have ever seen. Who knew that lower intestines were second only to duct tape?

The makeup on the zombies was very good too. It really worked out well against the snowy scenery and even looked "pretty" in an undead sort of way. They weren't overdone like we see in so many other zombie films, presumably because most of them originally died from hypothermia and their bodies kept well-preserved in the chilly climate. Two thumbs up for having a legitimate excuse for good-looking corpses.

All in all, a fun movie. I recommend it to zombie fans and non-zombie fans alike.

Film information: Dead Snow

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