If you like your serial killer thrillers to be, you know, good, it’s probably best you stay away from The Snowman.
The mangled Scandinavian whodunnit is so messy and ridiculous it actually feels like a test in one’s ability to suspend their disbelief.
First of all, despite being very clearly set in Oslo, Norway, with a variety of Norwegian characters, nobody speaks the Norwegian language.
They barely even attempt Norwegian accents!
Lead actor Michael Fassbender (The Light Between Oceans) plays Detective Harry Hole with what seems to be his own Scottish accent.
Americans J.K. Simmons (Whiplash) and Chloe Sevigny (Zodiac) speak with what seems like a British accent, while Val Kilmer (Kiss Kiss Bang Bang) just ignores his surrounds and runs with a broad American accent.
The accents alone are enough to infuriate viewers before they even get to the plot – and the plot is no saviour.
We follow Hole as he investigates a killer who abducts women and leaves snowman clues behind – sometimes featuring one of the victim’s body parts, sometimes not.
Another detective, Katrine Bratt (Rebecca Ferguson, The Girl on the Train) says the killer is set off by the falling snow (a line featured prominently in the trailer), however that idea is never explored again.
The plot is very disjointed, with its pacing and tone all over the place.
One particularly tense scene where a character is in danger is rendered laughably tensionless when the action flicks to another character making a phone call – completely ruining the suspense that was being built.
It is hard to believe The Snowman is produced by Martin Scorsese – a master of crime dramas – and edited by his right-hand-woman Thelma Schoonmaker, given its inability to connect with the audience and present action beats that actually make visual sense.
Fans of serial killer films will be bitterly disappointed by this adaptation of Norwegian author Jo Nesbo’s book.
When the final reveal is made and the audience finds out who the killer was, there’ll scarcely be anyone left in the cinema who actually cares.
You’re best to leave this one well alone.