Nazi zombie sequel is splatter by half…
Hard as it is to admit, we probably wouldn’t have Dead Snow 2 without Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters. In 2013, Norwegian director Tommy Wirkola followed up his zombie splatter flick Dead Snow (budget: $800,000) with studio stinker Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters (budget: $50m). The results were more fairy stale than fairy tale. Still, that big-budget sojourn seems to have taught Wirkola a thing or two about moviemaking: this blood-soaked sequel is slicker, sicker and 10 times more entertaining than its predecessor.
As before, gore’s the name of the game as we pick up with Martin (Vegar Hoel), the first film’s one-armed survivor. After scrapping with undead Nazi Herzog (Ørjan Gamst), Martin wakes up in hospital to find Herzog’s severed zombie arm has been attached to his stump. With Herzog and his (ahem) army targeting a small Norwegian town for annihilation, Martin recruits the help of the Zombie Squad, a trio of Americans called Blake (Ingrid Haas), Monica (Jocelyn DeBoer) and Daniel (Martin Starr), who’ve never seen a zombie before in their lives and are more interested in spending their time talking about the delights of Star Wars.
Of course, plot comes secondary to the hack and splat. Tipping its hat to The Evil Dead and Peter Jackson’s early gore flicks, Dead Snow 2 is a 90-minute symphony of skull-splitting sight gags, each one more revolting than the last. Upping the ante on the original, the body count’s higher, the belly laughs bigger, the battles more epic (including a climactic clash between undead Nazis and Russians). In an age of duff DTV horror sequels, Red Vs. Dead comes up smelling of roses.
- VFX breakdown
- Short film