Separated from her fiance after sneaking onto a restricted slope, Mia (Ivanna Sakhno), a free-riding snowboarder, must survive not only against nature but the masked snowmobile rider in black who’s out for her blood.
Yes, it may be October and the majority of people are more than likely watching their favorite iconic horror movies such as Halloween, Friday the 13th, and A Nightmare Before Elm Street, and don’t get me wrong, I’ll definitely be visiting the classics soon enough, but I thought it would be a fun and interesting idea to watch a Christmas-centered horror film for today.
While scrolling through potential horror films to watch, I stumbled upon a new horror-thriller titled Let It Snow that seemed to have some fairly strong potential. Then again, I didn’t watch a single trailer before going in, so I really didn’t have a clue what to expect. Thankfully, I can say that this is a gripping and slow-burning descent into madness that will leave you unsettled for the vast majority of the ride.
Plenty of people are going to watch Let It Snow and say that it was extremely boring and nothing of real merit happened. I can definitely see where those people would be coming from, but I personally have to disagree. Instead of making something horrific happen on-screen every other minute, screenwriters Stanislav Kapralov and Omri Rose made the wise decision to focus on the lead character’s state of mind and how she handles this situation first and foremost.
We really get a strong sense of who Mia is. She loves her boyfriend Max (Alex Hafner) and she wants to start a family with him in the near future. Before they start the next exciting chapters of their lives, they figure they could use a little bit of a getaway, which is when they decide to go on a slope that is widely regarded as dangerous within the area.
Max suggests to everyone that he “has a big surprise” in store for Mia when they arrive. However, that’s when the crazy things start to happen and it’s also when the movie as a whole becomes hugely entertaining. It’ll keep you guessing all the way to the final few scenes, which are hauntingly bleak and powerful. That being said though, I do think the ending went on a bit too long. If a couple of minutes were trimmed off, it would have made things a little bit more ambiguous in the long run. There’s even an after-credits scene that felt incredibly tacked on and pointless.
But one of the reasons why Let It Snow works as well as it does is due to the lead performance by Ivanna Sakhno. I haven’t seen a single film of hers besides this one, probably because she has starred in tons of Russian-made movies, but after watching this one, I’m definitely curious to see her other projects. As Mia, Sakhno feels layered and poignant. She will do absolutely anything to fight for her survival. Oftentimes Sakhno is forced to convey intense emotions with just her face, and she makes it look easy.
At the end of the day, I suppose this movie could have benefited from more thrills and shocking moments along the way. But even still, Let It Snow manages to be a captivating horror-thriller with a stellar lead performance and also, some absolutely gorgeous cinematography and scenery along the way.
Let It Snow is a bitingly dark descent into madness thanks to its lead performance from Ivanna Sakhno and its moments of genuine tension along the way.
Overall Grade: B+
MPAA Rating: R for some bloody/violent images and brief language
Directed by: Stanislav Kapralov
Distributed by: Grindstone Entertainment Group
Release Date: September 22, 2020
Running Time: 86 minutes