It is difficult to review this film without giving away any major plot points, but I will do my best.
I’ll start off by simply using one word descriptions. This film is dark. It is gritty. It is dirty. Violent. Thought-provoking. Disturbing. Original. Intense. Epic.
The plot is simple enough. It is set in a post-apocalyptic world where the only remaining survivors on Earth live on a train called the Snowpiercer that circles the globe. A class system is in place that puts the low class passengers at the back of the train and the high class passengers at the front. Chris Evans plays Curtis, a man who leads a revolt to help those at the back of the train fight their way to the front.
That is all I will tell you about the plot, as that is as much as I knew when I watched it. I think it is a lot more fun that way. There are plenty of twists and turns and interesting characters to keep you at the edge of your seat through the entire film. This is one of those films that keeps you guessing and slowly settles the confusion you will most certainly have and reveals awful and revolutionary truths towards the end.
While the storyline may be flawed and some plot points fairly unbelievable (how exactly does that train keep going?), this film is beyond entertaining and visually stunning. To truly enjoy this film, you need to leave your nit-picking at the door. Just sit back and behold the cinematic spectacle. This is not your typical mindless special effects driven film (Transformers *cough*). The action scenes are raw and feel real and are pure awesome. The performances are also very impressive. This is probably Chris Evans’ best performance to date. Of course, Tilda Swinton is extraordinary as always.
There is an important point I want to make that has to do with the ending of the film. I won’t say what happens, but I will leave you with these thoughts. This film is about the state of humanity. Would you rather live in the most grotesque and inhumane conditions or would you rather risk almost certain death for a better future? Sometimes to truly be free, death is the only escape.