Snow Movies (a list)

In 1922, Robert J. Flaherty gave us Nanook of the North, one of my favourite silent films and an early example of a snow movie — that is, a movie that wouldn’t be what it is without its wintry landscape. In some films, snow is incidental — a pretty backdrop or a minor metaphor (like the snowfall that blankets the Bride’s duel with O-Ren Ishii in Kill Bill Vol. I). In others, a snowy climate is central to the story or sometimes even a character in its own right. Here are ten movies that each uses ice, snow and cold in a specific way; together, they collectively demonstrate the range one symbol can have. I’ve considered several genres (no fear, Nanook fans — silent film, documentary and Inuit culture all appear below in some form) but, as with any film list, apologies must be made for omitting many more films than could possibly be included (I’ve also omitted snow movies I’ve written about elsewhere, such as the great Atanarjuat, which would otherwise have been a shoo-in).

Full list and comments below the fold.