Film Review: 2307: Winter's Dream

In this ambitious science-fiction thriller set on a frozen, post-apocalyptic Earth, humans and the humanoids they created fight for control.
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A brutal 2014-15 winter provided spectacular production value for 2307: Winter's Dream, a post-apocalyptic hybrid of Mad Max and Blade Runner that was largely shot in the Buffalo, New York region after spectacular snowfalls transformed the area into a plausible frozen wasteland.

Elite soldier Bishop (Paul Sidhu) serves the Arizona Federation, a frozen wasteland created by an environmental accident that forced what was left of the human race to retreat to an underground city-state. But they aren't the only survivors: Human scientists created the ’noids, a hairless, yellow-eyed, black-blooded and sterile humanoid slave class designed to live in perpetual servitude, braving elements too harsh for their fragile creators, acting as almost-human workers, experimental medical subjects and endlessly compliant sex slaves. The problem: A genetic glitch has given them sentience, and with sentience came dissatisfaction with their lot and the rise of a ’noid messiah, Ash-393 (Branden Coles).

So, if you're the kind of moviegoer who would opt to see this movie, you have a head start on figuring out how things are going to resolve themselves. Which isn't a criticism, per se, merely an observation. 2307: Winter's Dream is not the movie that takes familiar science-fiction tropes and puts a striking new spin on them, the way, say, Blade Runner did—something that's especially likely to come to moviegoers’ minds given that 2307 is opening on the same day as Blade Runner 2049, a film that (for better or worse) comes with a boatload of name recognition firmly on its side.

All that said, on its own terms 2037: Winter's Dream isn't a bad movie, just a very familiar one, the kind of thing that could be a pleasant surprise if run across unexpectedly during a bout of late-night channel surfing, when futuristic babes, hissable baddies—notably Mein Kampf-quoting, "Hitler was a fallen prophet" uber-bitch Kix (Arielle Holmes)—icy landscapes and portentous voiceover musings all seem more credible than when one is fully awake.

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