Movie Review: Snowpiercer

Directed by Bong Joon-ho 

5 Stars

It is 2031, and after an experiment that was supposed to save the world from climate change causes it to freeze over and destroy most life on earth, humanity is but a fraction of what it used to be. The survivors of the disaster all live on the Snowpiercer, a train that runs around the globe, impervious to the elements and powered by an everlasting engine. The poor and oppressed tail end of the train is constantly harassed by enforcers from the front end, who do things like taking their children and feeding them unhealthy food. Curtis Everett, second in command to Gilliam, the leader of the tail, executes a plan to rebel against the front and Wilford, the operator of the engine. However, their journey across the train reveals dark secrets from both ends of the Snowpiercer.

This is a great film, but it’s also very confusing if you think about it hard enough. The movie is full of metaphors, and the Snowpiercer is just one big metaphor. With the front and tail ends clearly separated, it becomes an easy-to-understand metaphor for the class divide in modern society; one example of this in the movie is that the front end enjoys steaks and sushi while the rear end eats protein jelly every day. The residents of the front end are also given propaganda that makes excuses for the treatment of the tail end; they (the tail-enders) “deserve” their treatment because they didn’t pay for the train, unlike the front enders who paid for it with the money they earned which is also another obvious metaphor. Despite the lack of subtlety, this movie had great dialogue, action and themes, so it’s up there with the greatest movies of the last decade.

Reviewed by Gavin 

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