THE BLIZZARD (2018) short review

152517.39787227_1000X1000

Jiang Kaiyang’s The Blizzard follows Song Chao (Nie Yuan) and Liu Haiyang (Tan Kai), best friends turned enemies: after being kicked out of the police academy where they were both being trained in Harbin, Song murdered Liu’s father for mysterious reasons, and Liu – now a police detective – has had only revenge on his mind ever since. One day, Song reappears, lured out of hiding to rescue a friend who was kidnapped by a local mobster; Liu is ready to bring him to justice, but he doesn’t realize that the murder of his father is part of a deep conspiracy, and Song may not be the real culprit… Add a thick layer of snow to it, and a solid yet unremarkable thriller can take on an atmospheric, unforgiving edge. Such is the case with The Blizzard, which starts promisingly enough with several intriguing plot strands, but then fails to combine them in a compelling way, with plot turns either thuddingly predictable, or simply ludicrous, and a surfeit of thinly-written characters that enter the story without proper introductions and exit it as loose ends (which works for ‘slice of life’ drama but not for action thrillers). Yet thanks to the aforementioned snow draping stark Harbin cityscapes and classily captured by Korean cinematographer Kim Gitae (2012’s Confession of Murder), strong performances by Nie Yuan (impressively intense) and Tan Kai (engagingly rugged), and a few raw, Korean-style brawls choreographed by Kim Shin Woong (2015’s The Throne), The Blizzard remains an efficient little thriller. **1/2

Advertisements
Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: