A new New Year's resolution – watch more films! And here's my first of the year:
Snow Cake (2006)
In a nutshell:
Alan Rickman (Alex) stars as a very depressed ex-convict driving across Canada to Winnipeg. A young girl named Vivienne (Emily Hampshire) meets him in a diner, then catches a ride with him. Along the way tragedy strikes, and Vivienne is killed.
Alex, guilt-ridden, finds Vivienne's mother, Linda (Sigourney Weaver), in order to apologize and give her some things Vivienne had bought for her on the drive. It turns out Vivenne's mother is autistic, mystified by snow and all shiny things. Much of the plot centers on Linda and her world, how she reacted to loss, etc.
Alex promises to stay long enough to help Linda through the funeral. Meanwhile, he meets and develops a relationship with one of Linda's neighbors (Carrie-Anne Moss).
And the rest… You'll just have to watch it if you'd like to know.
In some ways I found it a bit trite, and one element I thought too coincidental and convenient, but sometimes life can be like that. Sigourney Weaver as an autistic mother was a good twist, though at times I'm not sure she was true to character. And she became very annoying very often. Then again, I imagine dealing with an autistic person isn't easy.
Things weren't quite explained as far as how Linda became Vivienne's mother, who was the father, etc. That was glossed over, and a lame attempt made at explaining it. It would have been better to leave that unsaid rather than make it seem a bit ridiculous.
An upside was the occasional humor injected into what could have been a serious downer of a movie.
Would I recommend it? Yes, but with the reservations I mentioned above.
"Genie" Award (whatever that is) – best supporting actress: Carrie-Anne Moss
3 thoughts on “Film: Snow Cake (2006)”
This is one of my favourite movies *ever*. I saw it when it came out and own a copy. One of the best moments in the film is the lady who says she knows all about autism because she’s seen “that movie”. (She means “Rain Man”, of course.)
As for the explanation about Linda’s pregnancy being “ridiculous”, Lisa, please. If someone with autism doesn’t want you to know how something happened, there is no way in God’s earth you will get at the story. Trust me, I’m a mum of someone on the spectrum. The fear of my daughter being exploited is a fear I live with every day. She either wouldn’t tell us, or would be unable to find the words.
From my own experience, nothing in this film is trite, nor did I feel Weaver was ever untrue to her character. My daughter seems very autistic some days, close to neuro-typical on other days. Lovable one moment and yes, annoying as hell in others. (Actually, these days I find myself asking myself: “Is this autism or adolescence?” Yes, people on the spectrum have hormones too…)
I subscribe to the slogan: “If you’ve met one person on the spectrum…you’ve met one person on the spectrum.” Sigourney Weaver did a fine job of illustrating that there is so much more to autism than Dustin Hoffman who, I hasten to add, also did a fine job — of portraying *one* person living with autism.
The “Genies” are given out by the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television. Kind of like the BAFTAs.(This was a Canadian/British co-production.)
Two people, two opinions. Keeps life interesting. My problems with it are the things that took me out of the story, so I remembered I was watching a film and wasn’t too caught up to get lost in it. I’m very glad you enjoyed it a lot, and that’s how it goes when two different people look at the same thing.
lightweight snow blowers
Bluestalking: Film: Snow Cake (2006)