WITH 2008's Let The Right One In, director Tomas Alfredson made one of the best film I have ever seen - a hauntingly powerful vampire film which has since been remade for an American audience and turned into a stage play.
He then went on to direct a note perfect adaptation of the John Le Carre spy thriller Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy. Six years have passed since then and finally The Snowman arrives. Based on the bestselling novel by Norwegian writer Jo Nesbø, this adaptation boasts Michael Fassbender, Rebecca Ferguson, Charlotte Gainsbourg and with the always great JK Simmons, and (unfortunately the always terrible ) Val Kilmer, along with Martin Scorsese as a producer and Thelma Schoomaker as editor. I was optimistic despite the generic trailers.
Alcoholic norwegian cop Harry Hole, is investigating a report of a missing woman. The killer has left a calling mark Hole has seen before - a snowman. He senses a killer he has investigated in the past is behind this and the falling snow seems to be what sets him off. It becomes a race to catch him before the next snowfall. The film is based on is the seventh novel in the series featuring Harry Hole books, so we are given an abridged version of his life that feel forced and shoehorned in.
To say I was really disappointed with this movie would be an understatement, perhaps a case of too many cooks, this movie is a mess. It jumps around time lines, the story nonsensical, and worst of all it’s boring. It's really boring. There’s more dramatic tension in the Christmas cartoon The Snowman then there is here. Thefinal reveal feels obvious and 45 minutes in you will have figured out who the killer is. Viewers will also get the feeling that they have seen this done so many times before, and so much better on Scandi TV shows and BBC mini series.
One positive is the beautiful countryside of Norway. If I were the Norwegian version of Board Fáilte I’d cut out all the storyline stuff and put an A-Ha track over the beautiful scenery. Save us all a lot of time and get to see the bits worth seeing. Shame to see such talent attached to such a lousy piece of work but it does happen. Give this one a miss, let this snowman melt.