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Dead Snow 2: Red vs. Dead—Movie Review

Dead Snow 2: Red vs. Dead—Movie Review

Normally I would run from a movie about Nazi zombies that
promises a great deal of graphic gore. As it happens, I was obliged to watch Dead Snow 2 as part of my jury duty at
Fantastic Fest—and thought it was terrific. I didn’t see its 2009 predecessor,
but I can tell you that instead of the one-joke movie I anticipated, director
Tommy Wirkola and his co-writers (Stig Frode Henriksen and leading man Vegar
Hoel) deliver a wickedly clever screenplay that never runs out of fresh, funny
ideas. Their characters meet the grisliest fates, and the camera doesn’t spare
any details, but the results are so extreme that they inspire shock and
laughter at the same time.

A quick recap acquaints us with the story of Dead Snow, in which Nazi zombies invade
snowy Norway and make our hero’s life a living hell. He’s forced to kill his
girlfriend and chop off his own arm in order to avoid becoming a vampire
himself—but as the new story picks up, he learns that he’s not yet out of the
woods. Having warded off a Nazi colonel and caused an auto wreck, he wakes up
in the hospital, only to discover that well-meaning doctors have attached the
German officer’s arm to his body!

I needn’t bother with more details: the movie is off and
running and scarcely stops to take a breath. An unlikely intrusion by three
American zombie hunters is par for the course in such a farcical setting, yet
somehow the unfolding story makes sense (if you’re willing to go along for the
ride). The nerdy leader of the American trio (Martin Starr) says to Hoel at one
point, “I’ve seen a thousand zombie movies and this isn’t in any of them!”   



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