The Washington Times - June 12, 2009, 11:52AM

Dead Snow zombie

The new horror film “Dead Snow” serves up the best one line description a shocker could have.


“It’s a zombie movie … but the zombies are Nazis!” What horror fanatic isn’t intrigued by that pitch?

“Dead Snow” has a killer hook, and virtually nothing else. The quirky premise quickly gives way to garden-variety boredom.

The Norwegian import, now available on IFC on Demand, starts with a bunch of young, pretty people gathering for a little snow-bound R&R.

None of the characters leave an imprint, and a sex scene in an outhouse is more disgusting than any of the decapitations we see later.

The trouble begins with a strange older man knocks on the door asking for coffee. He’s really here to sketch out the entire back story, which he does in an utterly unbelievable rant about how evil lurks around the corner and they should be very, very careful.

He then proceeds to pop a tent nearby in the freezing cold, with only a rusty gun for protection.

Good luck with that.

When the film descends into bloody chaos in the final moments, it’s actually a relief. The kills prove occasionally creative, and it’s always a blast to see a scene in which zombies try to invade a house while the frantic survivors board up every window and doorway.

That bit never gets old.

Continuity errors pop up frequently, only to be washed away by another torrent of blood. At one point, two of the surviving characters decided to split up without giving a reason why. The moment might have worked as a humorous aside, but the touch here is decidedly deadly.

Taken as a whole, “Dead Snow” is so clumsy it could be seen as parody, but it’s never smart enough to pull it off. The horror comedy genre could be the toughest one to nail, with “Slither,” Tremors” and the “Evil Dead” films coming to mind as rare exceptions.

The frenzied final half hour will engage the gore hounds, and the sheer novelty of the premise remains a hoot.

Every other aspect of “Dead Snow” is DOA.

(Photo: A Nazi zombie is ready for his close-up in “Dead Snow.”)