Overlord - This JJ Movie Doesn't Rock
Dir: Julius Avery
Starring Jovan Adepo, Wyatt Russell, Pilou Asbaek, Bokeem Woodbine, Ian De Caestecker, John Magaro
This latest mystery box of a production from JJ Abrams is, to be honest, something of a mixed bag. Long rumoured to be another barely-linked Cloverfield tale, it turns out not to be, but a WWII horror movie gorefest instead. And not a great one.
It starts off well enough with a team of US soldiers dropping into occupied French territory to help initiate D-Day by taking out a Nazi radio tower. The team is fairly one-dimensional but Avery keep things moving well enough initially. Then the movie spins into a kind of torpor before reigniting itself as an all out horror movie with the discovery of a Nazi scientist determined to unleash his Nazi zombie-like creations on the world. There’s something here about the horror of war being pushed to the limit with the supernatural horrors this version of war offers up – but it’s a lot too muddled to be anything resembling a message. It has a few gripping moments but with what feel like long periods of tensionless rest in between.
With movies like this, JJ is coming perilously close to doing what his idol Spielberg did back in the late ‘80s/early -90s – by spreading his name leaner and leaner to deliver products, he’s in serious danger of diminishing the brand.
Sometimes – as is certainly the case here – less really is more.
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