Director: Tomas Alfredson.
Alfredson, the director behind the original and best, Let The Right One In and the clever and equally brilliant Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy; takes on Norwegian crime-writer, Jo Nesbø’s titular best-selling novel that’s part of a short series and possibly leading to future film adaptations.
An infamous serial killer returns to Oslo to continue his killing spree in apparent unrelating murders. A washed-up, self-abusive detective teams up with an ambitious recruit in a desperate hope to catch the Snowman before he strikes again.
Unfortunately, what appeared to be a promising, chilling thriller; the film lacks any real greatness and is sadly rather mundane and unexciting where it should have been riveting and possibly even shocking. It feels like it loses it’s way especially with the trailers telling a different story with more than just a couple of missing scenes.
Director Alfredson has even voiced his disappointment stating that due to scheduling pressures, the production was rushed and missed a fraction of the original screenplay, which had already deviated from the original novel.
It does keep true to the book’s setting of being in Oslo’s unforgiving winter but this only makes the film’s misuse of casting even more noticeable. It doesn’t make sense to make essentially a Norwegian film, in Norway, on location (which is part of Norway’s plan to entice more mainstream film production, the next one being Downsizing) but use a vast number of foreign actors. Maybe in an attempt to attract the wider audiences.
Not putting the performances at fault because they’re good enough, believable but nothing of award-winning calibre. Fassbender, Ferguson and Gainsbourg Do well enough, but what has happened to Val Kilmer!? I understand he’s had a rough time and I’m really glad to see he’s back, but if it wasn’t from reading the credits, I wouldn’t have recognised him.
Sadly, this film has been one of the biggest disappointments of the year, and that’s saying something for being quite late into the year already. It’s certainly not of the usual quality of all involved, especially Alfredson who’s probably more disappointed himself with the overall film.
Running Time: 5
The Cast: 4
Job Description: 3
The Extra Bonus Point: 0