Plot: Harry Hole (Michael Fassbender) was once a skilled detective, but his addiction to booze tanked his career and most of his personal relationships. He is still around, but at work he is kept at a distance from most cases, though he does his best to maintain a bond with his ex Rakel (Charlotte Gainsbourg) and her son Oleg. So even if the rest of his life is in the trash, at least that one bright spot remains. Soon Harry meets Katrine (Rebecca Ferguson), who consults with him about a missing persons case that could be linked to a series of murders. The two clash a little, as Harry feels like Katrine is holding back information, but he does his best to assist her. When it becomes clear there is some kind of pattern, Harry partners with Katrine, but also keeps an eye on her and follows up on some of his suspicions. Is Katrine hiding information and if so, how does it relate to the case and can Harry keep his demons at bay long enough to investigate this brutal chain of murders?
Entertainment Value: The Snowman had a rough production, to the point even the film’s director dismissed the movie before it was it ever released. I do think the movie runs overly long, as some scenes drag a little, but otherwise, I loved this glorious cinematic clusterfuck. A detective named Harry Hole, a killer who makes less than artistic snowmen, and a narrative that makes little to no effort to make, mixed with plenty of odd moments, that is what The Snowman delivers. Michael Fassbender is asleep in most scenes or at least devoid of kinetic presence, which means the best part about our hero is his name, Harry Hole. But to balance him out, we have silly snow sculptures and a few quick screen appearances from J.K. Simmons, who gives us one of the worst accents I’ve ever heard. The attempted seduction scene with him is beyond cringe level, just absurd and so fun to watch. A lot of landscape visuals slow down the pace, but the movie keeps throwing awkward, weird, or nonsense driven elements at us, so the movie is never dull in the least. It makes no sense whatsoever and concludes with the biggest wet fart of a finale in recent memory, but it is such a total mess, you can’t help but be entertained. I know I am in the vast minority on this one, but I loved The Snowman, even if it was for unintended reasons.
The lone nakedness is a creepy scene where J.K. Simmons snaps a cell phone picture of a chick’s breasts. Another scene offers a hilarious sequence of motivated dry humping, but it ends there, with no skin revealed. A lot of the bloodshed in The Snowman is the remnants of violence, such as dismembered corpses or bodies with the heads blown apart in colorful ways. The mangled heads are a lot of fun and we even get like a blink and you’ll miss it shot of one of the explosions, but again, most of the carnage is never shown. But we do get some cool use of this high tech garrote, as well as some severed head fun and assorted other minor instances of violence. If you have a needle phobia, a few doses of a tranquilizer are given by force. The dialogue is the kind of stuff that you if you take it seriously, you’ll hate it, but if you look at it like a comedy of errors, it can be quite fun. Fassbender is deadpan, references to the great Harry Hole are made, Simmons camps it up, and since the script makes no real sense, neither does the dialogue and to me, that is great news here. In terms of craziness, we have a guy named Harry Hole, the awful looking snowmen that scare no one, rampant flocks of flesh eating birds, a mother’s creepy smile as she drowns, an odd fetish with a sporting event, a totally loaded with nonsense narrative, and man, one of the biggest flat tire endings I’ve seen in a long, long time. The Snowman is just one bit of nonsense after another, a serious movie that you simply can’t take seriously, even for a second.
Overall Insanity: 7/10