It’s been a long road for Snowpiercer and I’m not referring to the apocalyptic frozen train ride which is the basis of this film. Snowpiecer has actually been around since 2013 and opened in foreign markets to great success. Unfortunately, Snowpiercer got hung in domestic distribution limbo with The Weinstein Company and was finally released in a very limited release. Lucky for us the film caught fire with positive buzz and expanded its theater count and is now available to American audiences through various on-demand services. I can tell you the wait was worth it when it comes to Snowpiercer.
Snowpiecer proves that you can have a big action film about a violent uprising on a futuristic train, while still being a thought-provoking movie experience. Snowpiecer goes the ice age end of civilization route with surviving members of humanity living on a high-speed train that is divided into class structures. The rich live near the front of the train in lavish fashion, while the poor are regulated to the tail end. Life is rough for the poor. They are forced to eat jello like protein bars while armed guards point guns at their heads just waiting for one of them to step out of line. It’s a familiar class system story we have seen before, but this time we have an angry Chris Evans with an axe.
Chris Evans has been an actor that has never got the respect he so rightfully deserves. The guy is solid as Captain America going toe to toe with a charisma monster like Downey Jr. and was underrated as Mace in the cult film Sunshine. Things may begin to change for Evan’s after American audience view his powerful performance in Snowpiercer. Evans is a different type of leader this time around as Curtis as he leads a rebellion towards the engine. Curtis is a killing machine who’s trying to hold onto the little humanity he has left as he is exposed to the horrors of life on the train.
Snowpiecer is a beautifully shot film with insane action scenes directed by Joon-ho Bong, but it’s a thought-provoking film as well. Are plague, disasters and war a good thing for society? Is a natural or forced purge necessary for survival? Seems like deep subject matter for a movie full of bullet to the head shots, but trust me it works. By the time the ride is over in Snowpiecer, you’ll be wondering which fighting faction was right? What would you do in Curtis’ predicament as a leader? Snowpiecer shows there is no harm having some substance with your fisticuffs.
Overall, I give Snowpiecer 3.25 out of 4 stars.
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