Snowpiercer is what the “Hunger Games” would have felt like if it had been aimed at an adult audience. Now THIS is Sci-Fi done right. It was full of suspense, outrage, curiosity, excitement, and surprises. The “world” is set up in both a class-based car system as one goes from the tail to the head.
The back of the train, as we are used to in our own cultural construct, is where the poor and disadvantaged live: the have-nots. The front is where the comfortable, powerful and the “god-like” Wilford resides. He calls all the shots on what happens in his world: the train. Literally the conductor.
It’s really easy to feel attached to the characters that are presented to us even though in our every day lives we do little to advance their well-being (unless personally involved in organizations that do so): people of color, the elderly, drug addicts. Similarly, we come to despise the people that represent order and progress in the confines of the rickety cars. This film did an excellent job of representing all members of society and flipping the typical on its head.
The idea of nutrition, of essentials, of cannibalism and of humanity tugged at your brain as you enjoyed well executed fight sequences and heart-tugging scenes. Pay close attention to the themes of education (formal and informal), of free-will, of humanity, of progress, of change and most importantly put everything in juxtaposition to what you know.
What does the engine represent? What about the children? Is the environment falling apart, trapping us, writing our fates? Are we doing it to ourselves?
The end is going to puzzle you, it will make you question the director and it will leave many, many, many unsatisfied. But the point of Science Fiction is not to fulfill your expectations, it’s to question them. So when you get to the end and you have an immediate reaction to what happened and what you believe will happen, then take a big pause and interrogate your assumptions and what Bong Joon Ho’s world actually represents in relation to your reality. That is the power of Science Fiction.
[Writing about movies is incredibly hard without spoilers]
Recent news on Global Warming:
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), established by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) in 1988, has published a report urging the world to decrease emissions by 70% by 2050 and 100% by 2100 in order to prevent an increase of 2 degrees Celcius (5 degrees Fahrenheit). You can read about it on CNN.com or the actual report can be downloaded by clicking here.
In The Atlantic, a piece exposes founder of The Weather Channel as skeptic of Global Warming.
CNBC published a short highlight of the industries that will be most affected by any dire climate change.