Dead Snow Movie Review: Friday The 13th With Frostbite

Move over, Ingmar Bergman. With the retro-Nazi generation gap zombie snacker Dead Snow, following on the heels of last year’s breakout vampire afterschool special in deep freeze, Let The Right One In, Scandinavia may soon become better known for its arty gore than its line of sturdy parkas. A Norweigan horror movie that takes terror to such outlandish extremes that plenty of humor also sneaks up from behind to take viewers by surprise, Dead Snow teasingly revives the overplayed undead genre just when it seemed like there was nowhere else left to go.

Taking time off from their studies for a winter snowboarding vacation in the wilderness, is a jolly band of med student party animals. Raucously referencing horror movies while not realizing they’re about to be in one, the high IQ victims fail to heed the predictions of a creepy stranger who knocks at the door and disses their organic coffee, while warning of WW II menacing Nazis still holed up in the hills.

Assuring the loony local that they’ll be just fine even with his conjuring of their intestines being wrapped around trees, because they’re, well, med students, the youngsters mock his tale of Nazi zombies on ice in the vicinity for over half a century. But when the tourists begin disappearing following sex in the outhouse before evening flushing the toilet, with what appear to be unfortunately inconvenient poop facilities, they figure out that something certainly not on their itinerary is transpiring.

Soon decomposing Nazi zombies in helmets and conversely odd well preserved uniforms inexplicably without a crease and possibly perma press, who knows, are crashing the party. And discovered dining on sloppy seconds of whatever may be left of their comrades. Though one snowboarder following an unfortunate close encounter rendezvous with his attacker, opts to kill and make up while joining forces with the enemy.

Rounding out the strangely fascinating when not outrageously witty proceedings, is a soundtrack that hums eerily like a dryer set on medium spin, and a zombie choking on goose feather parka stuffing while biting into a designated neck. But with a Nazi posse beatdown when they have to face off against superior makeshift weaponry that hadn’t been invented yet in their day, the aggressors meet with fairly fierce resistance. Think Norwegian Chainsaw Massacre.

Though hard core cannibalistic chiller fare is pretty much on the menu, the gleefully inventive nasty antics, including med school 101 self-surgery with a fishhook and a frantic one armed survivor who hopes he is safe from Nazi zombie discerning palates because he’s half Jewish, are never dull.

Dead Snow: Friday The 13th with frostbite.

IFC Films


3 stars

Prairie Miller is a New York multimedia journalist online, in print and radio, who reviews movies and conducts in-depth interviews. She can also be heard on WBAI/Pacifica National Radio Network’s Arts Express.