Set in an idyllic ski resort, ‘Snow Therapy’ sets in motion an avalanche of buried emotions.
The movie tells the story of a typical Swedish family on a ski holiday in the French Alps.
Soon, behind the beautiful people and landscape, a series of events uncovers layers of distrust and unhappiness in this apparently perfect family life.
Swedish director Ruben Östlund’s, in his fourth feature film, is determined to mix it up. “This is what we want in our lives – get married and then have kids and live in a nuclear family. To question that kind of lifestyle I think is very provocative in our time.”
Johannes Kuhnke, who plays the father in the movie, also has ideas on that theme: “I think in the nuclear family, we are building our own forts. We are separated from so many other people. In the nuclear family, we invite other people who are like us. We can invite other couples who have children and we don’t let any single people in. We cut ourselves out and many people are unhappy in this kind of family settings.”
Things start going wrong during lunch at a mountainside restaurant, when an avalanche forces everyone to flee. The mother calls for her husband as she tries to protect their children. But he simply grabs his iPhone and runs for his life. While the avalanche turns out to be a false alarm, the family’s world has been shaken to its core.
“One reason I was interested in the ski resort is because there’s a constant struggle between man and nature. It’s like the civilization and the uncivilized part of nature – the force of nature – and the human that is trying to control the force of nature. So it’s almost a metaphorical level in itself to let the film take place on a ski resort,” explained director Ruben Östlund.
The film opened to critical acclaim earlier this year at Cannes.
Described as "visually stunning (...) and emotionally perceptive almost to a fault", it "invites us to look at ourselves honestly, (...) attempting to hold us to account for our worst hypocrisies".
‘Snow Therapy’ is currently on global release.