film reel image

film reel image

Friday, January 19, 2024

Snowmageddon 2011 * * Stars


What I learned from 2011's Snowmageddon, is that a disaster movie can still be low-budgeted and have those cheesy, tangible Syfy special effects. I mean when something explodes in this flick, it looks like firecrackers going off or "Yo Yo" sparklers instead of an actual rumble. You sort of snicker even though overt devastation is truly at hand. 

Anyway here is the gist of Snowmageddon: a small, postcard-like Alaskan town becomes the target of natural disasters after one of its families receives a gifted snow globe on their doorstep. You see whatever happens inside the globe, happens in the town (wha??). We're talking avalanches, meteor-like hail, and large, geological fault lines. Ugh. I guess the household characters in Snowmageddon never saw 1984's Gremlins. I mean you never take home and/or open up a Xmas present that has an obvious admonition attached to it. 

So yeah, Snowmageddon takes itself real seriously even though it's hard for the audience member to do the same. But as mentioned in the first paragraph, it is indeed a disaster pic, carrying those disaster traits we've all grown familiar with. You know the concept of half the personas trying to stop the disaster and the other half just trying to survive. Then you've got the large cast, the weird climate changes, the fact that even good people die, the dreaded hate sink character, and the made-for-TV stuff. Um, somewhere Chief O'Hallorhan is quipping, "it's out of control, and it's coming your way". Oh fo sho. 

All in all, Snowmageddon isn't a bad movie in terms of the energy it brings. I mean it's earnest in its execution, piloting lots of action and jumpy suspense that never let up. The problem is that in all its earnestness, Snowmageddon's director (Sheldon Wilson) gets sloppy with the storyboarding and/or editing processes. In certain clips, the Alaska town featured has a ton of snow on the ground and a minute later, it looks like it's 50 degrees out (huh?). Then there's the notion of how the main characters never reveal how they got from point A to point B or how "this" led to "that" in terms of them being in peril. Helmer Wilson, well he cuts corners, not doing enough do justice with Snowmageddon's within reach cogency or meager, allocated spreadsheet. Mixed "snow job".  

Written by Jesse Burleson

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