Dead Snow: Red Vs Dead Blu-ray Review

     Actors: Vegar Hoel, Organ Gamst, Martin Starr
  • Director: Tommy Wirkola
  • Format: Blu-ray, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Dubbed: Norwegian
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R
  • Studio: Well Go USA
  • Release Date: December 9, 2014
  • Run Time: 100 minutes


            I have a vague recollection of enjoying Dead Snow, but little about the actual film stands out in my mind. The main problem is the cookie-cutter co-ed characters and set-up that resembled numerous other horror movies. The familiarity of this set-up was only off-set by the creativity and tone of the film’s violence, though the first act forces the audience to spend far too much time with a predictable premise and disposable characters. This problem is immediately resolved in the sequel, which begins where the first film ended, with solitary survivor Martin (Vegar Hoel) battling zombies after accidentally killing his girlfriend and sawing his own arm off. This fast-paced beginning only lets up for moments, but once again filmmaker Tommy Wirkola’s strength lies in the creatively gory action.


            The problem of blandly written characters has also been resolved, with outlandish and campy storylines allowing new ones to be inserted in place of Martin’s dead friends. Integrating English speaking actors into the storyline, Martin is joined by a trio of geeky zombie fighter (led by Martin Starr). Martin is also changed by the events of the first film, both mentally and physically. After watching (and contributing) to the death of his friends, Martin is determined to seek revenge against the zombie Colonel Herzog (Ǿrjan Gamst), and this goal is helped along by super powers given to him after the doctors accidentally re-attach a zombie arm in replacement of the one he cut off.


            In my review of the first film, I remarked that “Wirkola seems to be invoking early Peter Jackson films.” This means comically over-the-top gore and dark narratives approached with the lightness of a Tim Burton film, and all of that is back tenfold for the sequel. Horror elements left even further in the background when Martin and Colonel Herzog each create a zombie army to battle each other. Action takes over, though all is done with a grotesque but campy sense of humor.


            The Collector’s Edition Blu-ray release includes the international version of the film, with an optional commentary track with Wirkola. Also included is the short film “Armen,” a special effects featurette, the digital Dead Snow comic book, and a trailer.


    Entertainment Value: 9/10

    Quality of Filmmaking: 8/10

    Historical Significance:  7/10

    Special Features: 7/10



    No comments: