After a human-engineered planetary catastrophe (trying to arrest the planet's warming, we accidentally froze it solid), the remaining people are stuck on a train that never stops moving. Bong, whose previous films include the brilliant psychological thriller "Mother" and "The Host," a sublimely moving monster flick, is a playful and rigorous visual thinker. The violence inside swerves from slapstick to bloodshed and back, producing a volatile blend of humor and horror that pays tribute to the source material while coloring its themes with the director's distinctively perverse and humane sensibility. The reluctant leader of the rebels, a back-of-the-train troublemaker named Curtis, is played by Chris Evans, his clean-cut Captain America charisma obscured by scruffy facial hair and a black wool watch cap. There are soldiers in riot gear, armed with clubs and guns, but for Bong evil is never anonymous.
|Scooped by natalie w|
I watched this recently, and I must say it is genuinely my favourite film on this earth. While this article writes Snowpiercer as a "dystopian science fiction" dealing with the struggle to survive in a "postapocalyptic world". However, this article analyses this film only on a superficial basis, and so I substantiate this piece with my own interpretation of the film.
What makes Snowpiercer genius is its intersection of analogy and visual language: far from dealing with obscure and unspecified "issues" in a post-apocalyptic world, this film presents a classic Marxist-capitalist struggle. It is genius because the allegory of the train and segmented train compartments as being the "whole world" after life on earth has ended is really an allegory about the rising capitalist structures that eclipsed the post-industrial world. I disagree with the article in saying the engineer of this world is "enigmatic" and not "anonymous": in the film, what this character does is shroud himself in invisibility and a deity-like mystery, creating an air of power not unlike that of Big Brother in the novel 1948. Similarly, the heroes are more than "insurgents" retaliating after "cruel provocation": while I applaud the efforts of the article to address the issues and concepts raised in the film, it misses its mark here by simplifying the events of the film. The heroes of this film are not just rebels; they are Marxist revolutionaries in the truest form, tearing down the structures of the old world in which they have been enslaved and rebuilding a new one in which they can live. The premise of this film is not revolution, or a dystopian glimpse into our futures. This film speaks to the lower-class, the oppressed, the marginalised and depicts the lengths to which its characters are willing to go to preserve their autonomy, and allows us to ask ourselves how far we are willing to go to do the same.