By Brett Mullins
Original Title: Død Snø
Directed by Tommy Wirkola; Written by Stig Frode Henriksen and Tommy Wirkola
Dead Snow is a Norwegian horror comedy that sports quite a novel concept: Nazi Zombies.
A group of Med School students embark on a trip to spend their Easter Holiday frolicking about on the snowy slopes of the Norwegian Alps. Seven of the group travel by car, while the owner of the homely cabin, Sara, ops to travel by skiing to the destination. Expecting her to arrive the following day, the group has a few drinks, plays in the snow and has a good time. This is until they receive a visit from a old whiskered traveler who warns of evil in the mountains and details a story of several German soldiers chased into the mountains by rebellious Norwegians in the 1940s never to be seen again. After the stranger parts ways, another student goes missing, without a trace, and the group soon discovers the cause of such events: Nazi Zombies.
Unlike many films in this genre, the zombies are not used as a vehicle for some allegorical message; this is just an old fashioned zombie splatter film. This film doesn’t leave the audience with too much to think about other than chuckling at the wonderfully fresh attempts at deadpan humor. In one instance, one of the students dials emergency services. “We’ve been attacked by what look like Germans from the Second World War!...And we set our cabin on fire by accident!” He pulls the phone down from his ear, looks at his friend beside him and says “The bitch hung up on me!”
This film is appears to be a satire of other Zombie films or even horror films in general, in regards to ridiculous premises, lack of coherent back stories or inexplicably powerful antagonists. This aspect allows the audience to connect with the over the top vibe of the film and laugh along instead of being terribly confused.
One scene, in particular, excelled above all others in terms of symbolism. While doing battle with the zombies, one of the students wields a hammer and a sickle in a crossed fashion. This obvious imagery is clever and really quite funny. It immediately adds some depth to the humor of the film.
Dead Snow is an enjoyable silly splatter film with a few spooks along the way.