The Snowman review by Bobby Blakey
I love a good thriller murder mystery, but its been awhile since we have gotten a really good one. The trailers for The Snowman starring Michael Fassbender, Rebecca Ferguson, J.K. Simmons, Val Kilmer, Toby Jones, Chloe Sevigny, and James D’Arcy looked like it could offer up whats been missing in the genre, but does it have that dark twist I am looking for or should it have just melted before being released?
The Snowman follows an elite crime squad's lead detective who investigates the disappearance of a victim on the first snow of winter where he fears an elusive serial killer may be active again. With the help of a brilliant recruit, the cop must connect decades-old cold cases to the brutal new one if he hopes to outwit this unthinkable evil before the next snowfall. I went in with an open mind and high hopes and sadly came away pretty let down. This isn’t a horrible movie as it has shimmering hope of the movie I wanted, but never fully manages to come together. Director Tomas Alfredson has mention the issues putting this film together, but none of these seems to really be the issue with the final product. It is all over the place and never really offers up a sense of dread or urgency in trying to solve these horrific crimes making it pretty dull through most of it.
I love all the cast here, but none of them really shined like I would have expected. Fassbender is an awesome actor, but here he doesn’t fully fit the part. They want you to believe that he was a seasoned veteran and has a drinking issue, but nothing about him felt to me like either of these things other than showing him drink and passed out a few times. He was way too functional to be someone with the problem that is implied. Ferguson is wasted here walking through the case with little to do other than to seemingly follow Fassbender around. The rest of the cast are all strangely placed with the most out of place being that of Val Kilmer. I wasn’t even aware he was in the film and I was excited when I saw his name in the credits, but he is almost unrecognizable due to his real life health issues it made me sad. I was glad to see him working but it looked like he was really struggling to do his part and in turn felt off.
Visually the film is amazing to look at making almost totally worth watching. This landscape and winter worked perfect for this kind of story, but never offered up enough suspense or originality to make you fully invest in the finished product. Some of the reasoning for the connections to the characters or why things are happening make little to no sense. It is all over the place story wise and is so slow paced that you will be hard pressed to ever fully connect with anything they were hoping for in this film.