Overlord is a bloody good time at the movies and a perfect blend of war drama with horror.
Director: Julius Avery
Summary: On the eve of D-Day, American paratroopers drop behind enemy lines to carry out a crucial mission. But there’s more happening in this Nazi-occupied village beyond a simple military operation. The American team finds themselves fighting against supernatural forces, part of a Nazi experiment.
Sometimes, when a movie just works, the reasons are obvious. The pieces of the production all a fit together with complete precision. Everyone involved in the production did their jobs well, and the results are obvious on the screen. Overlord is a great example of this, so now we have a good movie.
This film works because of its effortless blend of drama and horror. Overlord begins as a standard World War II ‘brothers in arms’ movie, with a group of American soldiers dropped into Nazi-occupied France. They have to destroy a radio tower to give the Allies air support when they land in Normandy. A ticking clock drives this premise at the beginning of the film. Then the drama takes a hard left turn, and we’re dealing with crazy monster experiments until the bombastic third act.
The characters are all well acted by a bunch of people you might recognize. They each take the stock personality of their character and make it flesh and blood. The war-torn bad-ass, played by Wyatt Russell channeling both of his parents, gets his bad-ass moments. He also has moments of real heart. Jovan Adepo plays the man who has what it takes to be a soldier, but who needs to find his bravery well. Mathilde Ollivier stands out as the film’s lone female character. She’s not a damsel and is capable of using a gun (or a flamethrower) if the mission gets hairy.
The mission does get hairy, and the rumors that the third act of this movie is completely bonkers are accurate. It’s brutal, it’s gory, yet it still feels restrained in its gore. The story requires some insane effects, but the audience will not find them sickening. It’s also so over the top in its gore and violence that it becomes cartoonish which helps with all the Nazi zombies running around.
Overlord is a damn fine time at the movies. If you like the premise, this movie will not disappoint you. It works because everyone showed up and did their jobs with passion and heart.
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