Dead Snow: Red Vs. Dead (Blu-ray Review)

dead snow 2 whysoblu coverI love being able to say that Dead Snow 2 is an even better zom-com about Nazi zombies than the first film.  While I had a lot of fun with Tommy Wirkola’s (Hansel & Gretel Witch Hunters) first foray into the world of Nazi zombies in Norway, that film was more devoted to being a riff on horror comedies that had come before it.  With Dead Snow: Red Vs. Dead, Wirkola and his co-writers have the chance to explore the idea they came up with and have delivered a really fun film as a result.  Now this zom-com sequel is on Blu-ray for everyone to check out.



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Do not worry about whether or not you have seen the first film, because ‘Red Vs. Dead’ has a very handy recap, before picking up moments after where the first film left off.  The sole survivor, Martin (Vegar Hoel), manages to escape the evil Nazi zombie Colonel Herzog (Orjan Gamst), despite having to cut off his own arm in the process.  Herzog also loses an arm in an attempt to kill Martin, which gives this movie part of its main hook.  Both characters get new arms.  Martin, through a strange series of events, manages to mistakenly have Herzog’s arm attached to his body, while Herzog gains his own new arm, thanks to the Nazi zombie doctor he has in his group.  With these arms, the two can raise the dead from and have them stand behind them in a fight against others.  There is more to this, which includes the addition of an American force known as the Zombie Squad, which involves actor Martin Starr, but suffice it to say, this is a very silly movie that understands how silly it is, so if you can go along with the premise, you are in for quite the ride.

The great thing about a film like this is the lack of winking.  Shaun of the Dead will likely remain the easiest comparison for films like this for quite some time, but between that film and Peter Jackson’s Braindead, it is easy to see why.  Both films are romantic comedies first, zombie films seconds, despite the large amount of gore seen in both.  Dead Snow 2 is most decidedly a zombie film first, but it does know how to play it straight and keep things based around the characters, despite the inherent humor and reaches for comedy that it goes for.  For that reason, it is easy to embrace a film like this, given that I am a fan of a variety of types of horror films, without having my eyes roll.

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Director Tommy Wirkola certainly pulls out all the stops by the way.  This is a film that is incredibly gory and while it is handled with a sense of humor, plenty of death is thrown at a variety of innocents, which is humorous in the context of the film.  Regardless of who bites it though, the amount of creativity, especially when it comes to the use of intestines in this film, was a blast to watch unfold.  I should also note that a climactic battle of Nazi zombies versus zombie Russian soldiers takes place and it is quite impressive.  In terms of stunts, visual and practical effects, and the depiction of action, this is a film that delivers on its premise.

I was excited about seeing a sequel to Dead Snow, as that was a fun film to watch.  I am thrilled that Dead Snow: Red vs. Dead is not only a fun follow up, but it is even better than the first film, with a lot of neat ideas that lead to some great moments of comedy and creativity.  It is maybe the best I could ask for, as far as a film of this nature is concerned, but it is a highly enjoyable film for those who know what they are getting into.



Encoding: MPEG-4 AVC

Resolution: 1080p

Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1

Clarity/Detail: As I have said many times in the past, I am a huge fan of the way snow looks on Blu-ray.  That said, all of the snow is relegated to the beginning of this film, so I can only comment so much on its clarity.  With that said, the rest of the film is a pretty looking picture, given the grim nature of the story and various settings.  The zombie makeup has the right level of detail to really make this all work quite well and the use of various types of effects is always clear enough.

Depth:  There is a lot of depth to be seen in the wide shots and sequences of the film depicting mass armies fighting.  It gives the right sort of feel for a film like this.

Black Levels: Blacks are deep and inky and no real crushing that I could detect.

Color Reproduction: The film has a saturated quality to its color palette, but we also have things like the use of red and even the green tracksuit worn by Martin for a majority of the film.  All of this is to say that the colors come off very well, especially given the moments that are purposely designed to pop.

Flesh Tones: Both the living and the dead come off great, when it comes to seeing natural (“natural”) and consistent skin textures.

Noise/Artifacts: Nothing of note.




Audio Format(s): English 5.1 DTS HDMA, English 2.0 Stereo, Norwegian 5.1, French 5.1

Subtitles: English

Dynamics: This is a well-rounded and solid track that does its best to really capture the excitement of a film about a few humans taking on an army of Nazi zombies.  As such, you can really hear a variety of different sounds through the effects, action, score, soundtrack, dialogue, and other audio elements on a DTS track that is quite strong.

Low Frequency Extension: The big battles lead to some strong workouts for the LFE channel.

Surround Sound Presentation: A great balance is presented here, as the film manages to really deliver about as visceral an experience as one would want from this sort of film, with the aid of good use of the varying surround channels to really keep you in the moment.

Dialogue Reproduction: Crisp and clean in any language



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Not quite stocked with extras, but there is a whole other cut of the film, a commentary track, a short film and a brief VFX breakdown to make for a decent collection of extras. Big fans may be a little disappointed to not get more in terms of Making-of docs for this film though.

Features Include:

  • International Version – Død Snø 2This is the same film, but Wirkola shot two versions. One with the actors speaking in Norwegian and the other in English.  Given the presence of American characters, those scenes appear to be the same and while there may be minor tweaks here and there, this is essentially the same movie, but with a different language and optional subtitles.
  • Audio Commentary with Director and Writer – A fun conversation about the film, during the film. Fans will want to check this out to hear all they can about the production.
  • Short Film: Armen (HD, 13:59) – A dialogue-free short film about a man who loses and arm and gets a new one with odd results. It is obvious why this short film was included and it is also a fun watch.
  • VFX Featurette (HD, 1:53) – A brief look at a lot of the visual effects shots in the film, breaking down how they were accomplished.
  • Dead Snow Comic Book (HD, 2:16) – Basically a slideshow presentation of a comic book based on the first film and the Nazi zombies.
  • Trailer (HD, 2:13)


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Dead Snow: Red Vs. Dead is a silly film that embraces its silly spirit, while providing a whole lot of fun that is played pretty straight.  That all basically means that this is a zom-com about Nazi zombies that really digs into what one could do with a film about Nazi zombies.  It has a lot of very fun moments, some sights that are actually pretty awesome, and is paced really well to keep you interested.  The Blu-ray has a solid technical presentation and a small but neat set of extras to further flesh out this feature.  The type of person that enjoys these films should really like this film.

Order Your Copy Here:

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Writer/Reviewer, Film Lover, Podcaster, Gamer, Comic Reader, Disc Golfer & a Lefty. There are too many films, TV, books, etc. for me to list as favorites, but I can assure that the amount film knowledge within my noggin is ridiculous, though I am always open to learning more. You can follow me on Twitter @AaronsPS4, see what else I am up to at TheCodeIsZeek.com & check out my podcast, Out Now with Aaron and Abe, on iTunes.

1 Response to “Dead Snow: Red Vs. Dead (Blu-ray Review)”

  1. Mike

    I loved the first one, and when I saw the front cover for this, with the caption ‘The sequel you did Nazi coming’, it became a blind buy.