Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Euro - Horror Vaction: Dead Snow 2: Red vs Dead (aka Død snø 2) (2014)

Dead Snow 2: Red vs Dead (aka Død snø 2) (2014)
Director: Tommy Wirkola
Starring: Vegar Hoel, Ørjan Gamst, and Martin Starr
Running Time: 100 min

  I was so excited when I heard that director Tommy Wirkola (Dead Snow, Hansel & Gretal: Witch Hunters) was going to do this sequel.  I was totally blown away by not only the impressive gore scenes but the fantastic humour that balanced the film as well as all the great plot twists that made the first Dead Snow a now classic.  This film has some big black boots to fill, so I hope it can meet expectations.

  Starting right from where we left off in the other film, Martin escapes and gets into his car.  Martin quickly thinks back about his snow trip with his friends, how they found Nazi gold and how all his friends were torn apart by Nazi zombies.  Except for his girlfriend, who he accidentally killed.  Whoops!  He is also reminded that he had to cut off his arm because he was bitten and the only reason this horrible ordeal ended was because he finally returned the gold to the army of undead Nazis.  Then he looks down and finds one more coin.  Shit!
  Out of nowhere pops up Colonel Herzog, the Nazi zombies leader and smashes into the car to get Martin.  Martin fights him off and gets the car started but barely escapes the rest of the horde of undead coming toward his car.  He is now flying down the snowy roads with Herzog hanging onto his side window pawing at him.  By chance a huge truck is coming on the other side of the road, Martin smears Herzog on the truck, which rips him off the car, literally, and Martin tosses the last coin back at Herzog.  Unfortunately, Martin is exhausted from battling Nazi Zombies all day and he falls asleep at the wheel, then drives himself of the road and crashes the car.
  When Martin wakes up, he's in the hospital and he is handcuffed to the bed.  The police think that he was the one who murdered his friends and laugh at him when he tries to explain that is was actually Nazi Zombies who wanted their gold back.  Also, the doctor tells him that they were able to put his arm back on, but it isn't his arm that he has, it's Herzog!  It was ripped off when the truck smeared Herzog of the car and now it's attached to Martin, giving him super strength with that arm.  Unfortunately, Martin also cannot control the arm and he bursts out of the hospital bed.  Martins' new arm ends up killing another police man with it and once the police and doctors dog pile him, they sedate his ass and Martin goes night, night.
  Meanwhile, Herzog replaces his arm with Martins and decides that since their all up, they should finish their mission, which was to destroy a small town in Norway for disobeying the Fuhrer.  So they hit the road and Herzog decides that they need a bigger army of the undead to complete this task.  So, they start marching through other towns and creating new zombie soldiers as they go.  You have to admit, the man is resourceful.
  Martin finally wakes up again, now shackled to the bed but this time he has a visitor.  A young boy from the states, who finds his zombie arm fascinating and has sent a picture to the "Zombie Squad" to check it out.  Martin explains his situation to the kid and kid recommends getting in touch with the "Zombie Squad" to help him destroy Herzog and his undead army.  The boy unties Martin and the zombie arm accidentally throws the boy through the window, killing the boy and allowing Martin to escape.  He then calls the "Zombie Squad" and they agree to help him destroy this undead scourge.  Can Martin and his new friends stop Herzog a second time and save the people of the Norway or will they get caught with their panzers down and be trampled by the army of the dead? 


  This is a great sequel and keeps the same sense of humour and gory fun as the first film.  Director Tommy Wirkola doesn't miss a beat from the last film as he bombards with gruesome images of people being brutalize by these zombies but in an entertaining way.  There is tons of blood and there is no holds barred, Wirkola has the Herzog and his soldiers kill everybody!  No one is safe from this battalion of the undead!  Men, women, the elderly, kids, the handicapped and even babies fall prey to them but it's done in such a way that is palatable and cartoony.  You know you shouldn't be laughing but you can't help it.
  All the new characters are terrific and add such a great dimension to the film.  The "Zombie Squad" are Americans and claim to be professional zombie hunters, but have never faced a zombie because up until now zombies haven't been real. But they leave their parents basements and fly over to Norway to help Martin and prove everyone who ever mocked them about being zombie hunters wrong.  Their terrific to watch as they blunder around with that novice energy and excitement with just enough fear to make the scenes feel true.  Also the sheriff or chief of police of the small town that the Nazi are trying to destroy is pretty hilarious as well.  He is all bravado and big talk until he sees what's going on and then he wants to let things just take care of themselves.  He's kind of dumb but he has a great female sidekick cop who really seems to be the brains of the operation.  They two of them play really well off each other and they're very funny to watch. 
 

  There really wasn't too much to complain about, but maybe the end battle goes on a little long.  There are some many zombies fighting each other at this point that things do get a little muddled but overall Wirkola does a pretty good job keeping it exciting, fresh and on point.
  Also, the ending may not be everybody's cup of tea.  The ending is a bit sappy, very gross and it even surprised me a bit.  I don't want to ruin it but it leaves the film on a very weird note.  On top of that, watch till the end of the credits.


  This is a great film and a must see if you're a fan of the first one or even if you're not.  It has tons of great gory scenes mixed with a very dark but sharp sense of humour that is akin to say "Dead Alive" or the first "Evil Dead"zz.  This is definitely one of the better sequels that I've seen for a long time and not one that should be missed.


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