My insect antennae are picking up odd little tingle vibes from Tomas Alfredson‘s The Snowman (Universal, 10.20). Which may signify something good or even great. Who knows? But there’s something odd going on…I can feel it. How can a snow-blanketed policier about a mystifying hunt for a serial killer, especially directed by the respected Tomas Alfredson (Let The Right One In, Tinker Tailor Solder Spy), be anything but satisfying in a shaded adult way? How can it not be different, disturbing, unsettling? And with such a great-sounding cast — Michael Fassbender, Rebecca Ferguson, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Val Kilmer, J. K. Simmons, Toby Jones, Chloë Sevigny, et. al.
On the other hand there are four “hmmm” factors: (a) The Snowman opens four weeks hence (10.20) and yet I haven’t heard of any screenings or reactions to same…nothing; (b) I’ve learned to be slightly wary of films that open in England before the U.S. (the U.K. debut is on 10.13); (c) why didn’t The Snowman play at the Toronto Film Festival?; and (d) Michael Fassbender is still on the HE shit list — I’ve simply come to dislike the guy no matter what he does, and I don’t see that changing any time soon.
Hossein Amini and Peter Straughn‘s screenplay is based on the same-titled 2007 book by Norwegian crime-writer Jo Nesbo. The Snowman is the seventh entry in his Harry Hole series. Here’s the Wiki synopsis:
“Norwegian detective Harry Hole investigates a number of recent murders of women around Oslo. His experience of an earlier training course with the FBI leads him to search for links between the cases, and he finds two of them — each victim is a married mother and after each murder a snowman appears at the murder scene.
“On looking back through previous cold cases, Hole comes to realize that he’s on the case of Norway’s first official serial killer, as he discovers more women who have disappeared and are believed to have been abducted or murdered in a similar way. Almost all of the victims vanished after the first snowfall of winter, and a snowman is found near the scene — an obviously significant fact that was ignored by the original investigators.”