— CNP

Snowcake

Snowcake

Alan Rickman and Sigourney Weaver are two actors not generally associated with odd-couple comedy but some of the finest moments in Snowcake come out of their on-screen disparity. Rickman has that dry, acerbic voice that marks him as a natural villain, not because he looks nasty (though he can) but because there’s clearly something he’s hiding and he doesn’t seem to mind you knowing, but in Snowcake he is playing a fundamentally good person with a flawed past. Weaver is playing a woman in a Canadian backwater with “high-functioning autism”. Carrie-Anne Moss plays her neighbour, a woman with a penchant for gentlemen callers and an Oriental interior design philosophy (Blanche DuBois meets feng shui). The whole plot smacks of contrivance unfortunately, but I tried to push my misgivings aside and go with it. The three central actors are all seasoned performers and I feel all of them are doing their best with writing that doesn’t quite work. Nevertheless, there are moments in the film where the writing is razor sharp, particularly in the centre-piece scene of “comic book Scrabble” between Weaver and Rickman. The supporting cast simply make up the quota of eccentric townsfolk but the film still has a heart-warming and genuinely engaging quality to it. Montreal collective Broken Social Scene provide a disarmingly cute score but the fact that Steve Coogan and Michael Winterbottom pop up as executive producers seems surprising—perhaps on the page it seemed “quirky” rather than manufactured.