Review – Snowpiercer (2013)

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snowpiercer-52c827b34fa5cWelcome to Jamie Bell Week: Day 4. Now, when it came to looking at all the films Bell played a part in, Snowpiercer was a film that showed up. Interestingly enough, this was a movie I’d been planning to watch at some point. Unfortunately, it also always looked a little too weird, so I always avoided it, saving it for a rainy day. I guess that rainy day is here. Actually, I do believe it was raining pretty fiercely when I watched the film…so hey, it works, right? First of all, many of you don’t even know what this film is, so what is it?

Snowpiercer is a movie about the future when all mankind and animals have gone extinct, except for a precious few that currently are living on a train called The Snowpiercer. Each part of the train is dedicated to, basically, factions. The richest enjoy life in the front of the train, while the poor are treated like scum at the back of the train, and they’ve had it with the way they are treated, so a revolt is in the works. They plan to head to the front of the train, kill everyone that stands in their way, and take over, spreading the wealth around.

One of the reasons I wanted to watch this movie is because it reminded me of a book series I read this year called Wool. Instead of a train, the entirety of humanity lived in underground Silos that are run and controlled by a sort of government, and there’s always a revolt in the works. That’s just the concept though. The way they actually do things in this movie differ by extremes. Another reason why I wanted to watch this is that it’s at 95% fresh on RottenTomatoes, which is high praise, no matter how you look at it.

After seeing the film, I was indeed impressed by it, mostly because of everything that it actually did right (which is a lot). Sure, it feels a little cheap at times, but that’s fine, as long as the rest of the movie is focused on, and it is. So let’s break the film down and get down to the nitty-gritty, shall we?

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PEOPLE SCORE – 9/10
Acting – 2|Characters – 2|Casting – 2|Importance – 2|Chemistry – 1

Alright, let’s talk about the people category, which received 9/10. The only thing I think that could have been better, or more focused on, was the chemistry. The chemistry was mostly fine, but nothing stood out. Meanwhile, the acting was pretty phenomenal from almost everyone, the characters are all different and all memorable, they all have an important role to play and add to the plot, too. I said casting was 2/2, and even though I think someone else could’ve played Chris Evans’s role, I don’t think they’d do any better of a job, so everything there was as perfect as possible.

WRITING SCORE – 9/10
Dialogue – 2|Balanced – 2|Story – 2|Originality – 2|Interesting – 1

Next up is the writing category, which also got a 9/10. The only thing that could’ve used a little help is how interesting it is in general. Look, the movie is as weird as I thought it’d be. It’s got a pretty good story, and a lot of awesome things happen in it, but that doesn’t change how weird it is in general. Everything else, again, was pretty great. The dialogue was memorable, even though there are a lot of cars on the train, everyone sticks together, so it is a very balanced film, the story talks to us about equality and standing up for what’s right, no matter the consequence, and it’s pretty darn original if you ask me.

BTS SCORE – 9/10
Visuals – 2|Directing – 2|Editing – 2|Advertisement – 2|Music – 1

It’s “nine” day, apparently! Behind-the-scenes also got a nine. The only thing that could’ve used some help was the music. That was typical, nothing stood out. The visuals, even though they looked cheap at times, made a statement, and because of that, it actually did look nice. The directing also did a great job following all of these characters along on this journey while also making sure they didn’t fall flat and forgettable. The editing was really interesting in spots, like the fighting sequences and when things get dark. Finally, the film was as-advertised.

NARRATIVE ARC SCORE – 9/10
Introduction – 2|Inciting Incident – 2|Obstacles – 2|Climax – 2|Falling Action – 1

Yes, it’s also a 9 for Narrative Arc, and once again, it’s the last subcategory that doesn’t get full points. The falling action was really quick and more of something to make you think, but it wasn’t a perfect, new norm falling action. Everything else works. The introduction talks about this train and what’s going on in it, as well as the factions. The inciting incident is when the revolt begins. The obstacles are all the bad guys they come into contact with. The climax is the result of all that, and I already talked about the falling action.

ENTERTAINMENT SCORE – 5/10
Rewatchability – 1|Fun – 2|Impulse/Buy – 0|Impusle/Talk – 1|Sucks Audience IN – 1

No, the entertainment category didn’t get a 9. I do consider it a rewatchable movie, but I couldn’t even begin to guess the next time I’d even want to see it badly enough to rewatch it. It is definitely fun and sometimes sucks the audience in. I even wouldn’t mind having a discussion with someone about it, but I’m not dying to. Lastly, I have no impulse or urge to actually buy or own Snowpiercer. 

TOTAL SPECIAL – 45/50
Social Commentary – 10|Action – 10|Chris Evans – 10|Jamie Bell – 5|Halfway Decent – 10

As for the questions that I wrote before seeing the film? I figured this would be pretty heavy on the social commentary, and if you think about it, it really is. All this movie is, is a fictional and fantastical representation of how people are seen in today’s political world. I also figured there’d be a ton of action. I mean, Evans has an ax in the poster. It definitely didn’t disappoint there. As for it being a Chris Evans movie, I think this might be a movie I’m quick to mention after Captain America. When I think of him, I now think of Captain America, Cellular, and Snowpiercer. What about Jamie Bell? Personally, I’ve seen him in better films, so I might actually forget he was in this one, even though he did do a good job. Is it halfway decent? Definitely.

Total – 86/100

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