The FP (2011)

This is a film which is almost crying out for a one-line review, like “the greatest dystopian computer-dance-game you’ll see this year” or something like that. It almost goes out of its way to look silly, from its trailer – street gangs with unnecessarily similar names, almost constant profanity, the oddest plot – but there’s a lot more going on here than a central concept and clever marketing.

Cartoony? This film?

This film centres around two streeet gangs – the 248, our heroes, led by BTRO and JTRO; and the 245, led by L Dubba E. This film belongs in the glorious tradition of films where the police apparently don’t exist – and problems between street gangs are sorted out by games of Beat Beat Revelation, which is definitely not Dance Dance Revolution. We start the film with a matchup between the 245 and 248 – little brother JTRO wins his match against the delightfully named Sugga Nigga, while BTRO, for a reason I’m not sure is ever mentioned later on, drops dead halfway through his match with L Dubba E. JTRO, distraught at this, leaves town and abandons the FP (Frazier Park, the location of the film) to the 245.

A lot of the reviews of this film have been comparing it to sport films, which I suppose is true to a point, but it reminded me most of the classic Hero’s Journey. There’s the trauma that starts his journey, the friends who support him, the work to become the hero we all know he can be, and the climactic battle at the end. Oh, and there’s a girl to win over as well. There’s a glorious cast of characters with even more glorious names – KC/DC, BLT, Beat Box Busta Bill and all the people mentioned above, a set of odd-looking locations, cameos from people you’ll sort of vaguely recognise from other films and some awesome dialogue.

First and foremost, this film is loads and loads of fun. Like all good parodies, it plays it absolutely straight (apart from one scene lifted from an episode of “Police Squad!”, near the end), and the acting is surprisingly strong for such a low-budget film. L Dubba E (Lee Valmassy) is particularly great, like a raging, perpetually angry slang-shooting mohican-wearing erection made into a human; and there’s KC/DC, like a demented sensei / fixer for the 248. The dialogue is hilarious, too – just constant N-bombs and F-bombs and MF-bombs. In fact, the dialogue made a theory pop into my head, which was only dispelled by the last few minutes of the film. The FP is actually some Truman’s Show-style enclosure, where the only source of education was mid-90s gangsta rap. They throw the N-bomb around so much that it sort of ceases to have any meaning, but if you consider they’ve heard rap music but have no concept of skin colour, they’d just assume it was an insult, and that’s why the word stops being offensive. Why was my theory spoiled, I hear you ask? Well, there’s a solitary black guy in the film (way in the background of one scene near the end); and they tell you what N-I-G-G-A stands for – “Never Ignorant, Getting Goals Accomplished”.

If you wanted to, I think, you could dismiss it as something designed to be the sort of film that sites like this will watch, laugh at and then move on. And that’s what my viewing companion, my wife, did (after stopping the film a few times to ask me “is this really happening?” and “oh god, I can tell you’re going to love this”). But I think there’s a lot more to this, it’s made by people who were paying a great deal of attention to what they did, and there’s bits and pieces in there to reward the careful viewer. Firstly is the sheer range of their vision – this film is a sport film, a hero’s journey, a parody of dystopian films, a really funny comedy and has elements of all sorts of low-budget genre films. The already-discussed dialogue is pretty incredible – insults of length and speed are pulled off remarkably, and there’s a real richness to it, I think – take, for instance, ““Don’t let this shit put your brain on flips, you gotta think of beat beat like it was the civil war!”  There are also little things that give hints to the wider world – there are two pole-dancers in this film, and they’re both men, and the main hot women in the film are discovered dancing at the club inside a kid’s paddling pool. I really hope it wasn’t a “hey, we’ve got a paddling pool, what do you want us to do with it?” moment, but it’s so…odd…that it makes you ponder what their world is like.

BLT, JTRO and KC/DC plan their attack

Also, for the second film in a row, I need to mention the treatment of women. There’s a lazy dancer early on who has one boob hanging out to the delight of no-one (in the film, I mean), and the ending…well, it’s either pretty misogynist or an absolutely hilarious send-up of the conventions of these films, done with a straight face. My wife wasn’t thrilled by it, but I think they were aiming for the second option. The woman-as-prize thing is so ludicrous in this film that it has to be a parody, and I think it’s pretty clever of them to do it. I’d love to see more films where the women were in control and the men were the love interests, but I’ll settle for films like this, which show others up for what they are by amping up the ludicrousness.

I absolutely recommend this film to you all. In the spirit of supporting independent cinema, and after loving the trailer, I bought “Tha Delooxe Toe Up From Tha Mutha-Fucking Flow-Up Edishun”, containing not only the blu-ray, but your very own L Dubba E “grill”, a tampon signed by the filmmakers (it’s a plot point, amazingly) and a signed poster, which I’m going to work at getting displayed somewhere in the house.

 
I was reading a few other reviews, in order to find stuff to rip off to see if there was an angle I’d not thought of. Most of them were of the “leave your brain at the door, and you’ll love it” variety. I say no to that. Take your brain in, because there’s stuff in there to reward it. It may be cheap, a bit ridiculous and plenty ugly-looking, but the whole is a great deal more than the sum of the parts. Watch it, and enjoy.

The FP on IMDB
Buy The FP [Blu-ray] [2011] [US Import]

Rock of Ages (2012)

Sherrie Christian (Julianne Hough) is just a small-town girl, livin’ in a lonely world. She took the midnight train going for ehhh-neee-wheeeerre. Well, not anywhere, LA’s Sunset Strip. And it’s not a train either, by coach. Could be a midnight coach, I couldn’t say. Upon arriving, Sherrie immediately finds work in the notorious Burbon Room, which is facing both economic and ideological pressure from the mayor’s (Bryan Cranston) opportunistic campaigning. Hoping for a miracle, in the form of rock legend Stacee Jaxx’s farewell performance at their venue before going solo, will the Bourbon Room survive? Will Rock save the day? Will Sherrie find true love? Will anything else happen? Who knows? I do, and yes.


Now, it’s all very well for someone like me to bemoan the appalling degree of commercial precision that exists in something extolling the transcendent and implicit virtues of ‘Rock ‘n’ Roll’, such as this. It’s also completely all-very-well to throw something, perhaps a shoe, at the movie screen upon discovering its entire dramatic arc rests upon a misconception so rudimentary that it’s a wonder how any of of them got dressed in the morning. Fortunately (or unfortunately, depending on your whim), this is all very much part and parcel of the sub-culture that’s in celebration. The majority of criticism for Rock of Ages could just as easily be leveled at the music, making it something of a secret success if the music wasn’t so aggressively shallow. Despite what some of the dialogue, and partially the title, suggests, Rock of Ages isn’t really about rock ‘n’ roll. This is Hair Metal. It’s all there on screen, minus the drug abuse and gender confusion. In fact, the only reference to the latter is a gag where two guys at the bar are mistaken by the long-term proprieter for girls, because of their long hair. This is in a rock club. In LA. In the eighties.

Hair metal, by and large, sucks. It’s vain, hedonistic, rampantly exclusive, but at least looked like a jolly good time for the people concerned. Growing up adjacent to that time and distant of place, with a fairly stilted knowledge of popular music, it was already evident that Hair Metal was more or less the evil anithesis to Thrash, or Death, or Speed (curse you, needless metal sub-genre labels!) Metal. The relatively cooler but still thuddingly male likes of Metallica, Slayer, Anthrax et all don’t really get a look in on this production, except for a dance number set in a thoroughly vinyl-clad Tower Records store, where a few album covers make visual cameos (amusingly, a Christian Death LP can be clearly seen behind one of our doe-eyed protagonists). It’s not so much a celebration of rock as an apology for one of its most venal off-shoots.

Fleshgod Apocalypse LP cover just out of shot.

What it lacks in artistic integrity, it partway makes up for in some enjoyable lines and actors that are game for anything. Despite the outrageous artifice and absence of asymmetrical faces (save perhaps for Paul Giamatti’s turn as sleazy, handlebarred manager Paul Gill. Well, the handlebar’s pretty symmetrical, I suppose), there is at least a full commitment from all the participants. No-one seems to be phoning it in when they’d have every right to, judging by the subject matter – though perhaps not the paycheck. It’s also particularly nice to see appearances by comic talents Will Forte, Bryan Cranston and TJ Miller. All thoroughly underused, which serves to make their appearances more rousing. The fun is there, but it’s fleeting, revelling instead in a toothless facsimile of excess.

Camp is a slippery beast (fnar). It can be crass and simplistic, but attempt or consume it without the right attitude and you’ll flounder, or have a joyless time. With Rock of Ages, despite embodying the rich white guy’s killjoy appropriation of everything, there’s at least an embracing of its own camp. As Stacee Jaxx, Tom Cruise accurately embodies the kind of spaced-out douche you can really see frequenting impressionable hearts and minds. He also owns a comedy monkey. Under a more nuanced stewardship, the film’s sexism (Stacee’s rampant womanising and sexual magnetism ‘cures’ the uptight journalist character played by Malin Ackerman) and racism (the only black protagonist runs a strip club) could have been excused or even mocked. Instead they stand as awkward reminders of the fun we’re not quite having.

One of the by-products of the modern ‘karaoke musical’ is that the number of songs in the production inflates, then multiplies. There are over twenty seperate tracks woven into the story, not counting the two that play over the credits. One pop metal track takes over another, each one highlighting the paucity of variation more than the last. It’s most likely long been pointed out that Joan Jett’s ‘I Love Rock and Roll’ sounds identical to Def Leppard’s ‘Pour Some Sugar On Me’, but if Rock of Ages achieves nothing else, it can help remind a whole new generation. They’re also used rather interchangeably, leading to them feeling more like filler than crescendos of otherwise inarticulate emotion. Believe it or not, the song ‘Wanted: Dead of Alive’ by Bon Jovi does not plough a particularly furrowed trench into the human condition.

Just out of shot, Cannibal Corpse.

Worse than this homogeny is the license to exploit tropes. There’s really no story here, or at least not one to adequately invest in. Save for one or two moments, events occur in lazy accordance with expectation. Catherine Zeta Jones, as the Tipper Gore/Sarah Palin-esque Patricia Whitmore, may get more than one song number to her character, but doesn’t really succeed in creating much jeopardy, as though it could not be decided if it’s an A or B plot. This would be no matter at all if the film could generate enough sense of jovial irreverence. Instead we have some likeable, some charisma-free celebrities romping for coins. Yes, a good time is had, but one never feels that privy to the party.

Rock of Ages on IMDB
Buy Rock of Ages (DVD + UV Copy)

Juan of the Dead (2011)

Finally, a film I can be entirely positive about to review for this site. I’ll be back to the shark and mockbuster films soon, no doubt, but I got a break, and got to watch one of the funniest and most interesting films I’ve seen in ages. It’s also nice, every now and again, for my wife to be pleasantly surprised by one of the “what the hell is this?” films I pull out of the pile (although we both liked the trailer when it came out, so part of my job was done for me).

What revolutionary imagery?

We meet at the beginning the film’s two stars, Juan and Lazaro. They’re living outside the normal economy of Cuba, sailing a homemade raft out to sea in order to catch fish. But, they catch something else instead, and a zombie floats to the surface and has a pop at them – one harpoon to the head later and a demand that neither of them talk about that again, they’re sailing back to Havana and to their normal lives.

This next bit could have been lifted from a slice-of-life film about the tough conditions in Cuba and is one of the reasons I love this film. Juan is a kind guy at heart, helping the old lady in his building with her shopping while Lazaro pursues a guy who owes him money with a fairly worrying gleam in his eye. Simple set up of character, lots of nice moments with a smidgeon of foreshadowing, and this part of the film really ends with our two heroes, their friend China (a rather well-made up but dressed-down transvestite), his friend El Primo, a huge muscly guy who faints at the least sight of blood and Lazaro’s son Vladi California, all attending a meeting of Committee to Defend the Revolution, which looks one part neighbourhood watch, one part social club and one part political meeting. They make a comment about how it’s habit that they meet up there, a dig at Cuba’s regime which I was surprised about.

The obligatory full cast shot

Aside: I think a film that criticises the way a country is run is a good sign of a healthy state. People who can allow themselves to be mocked aren’t people who are going to go shooting other people for being insufficiently zealous (I hope). It’s a film with a lot to say about the place and time it was made, which it shares with the towering great of zombie films, “Dawn of the Dead”.

Zombies attack the committee meeting, and the main part of the film kicks into action. Our heroes spot an opportunity to make some money and start up a business from their building’s rooftop – Juan Of The Dead, “we kill your loved ones”. It’s halfway between extended montage and Ghostbusters pastiche, with a healthy dose of those films where people kill their opponents in the most ridiculous but cool way. Juan’s daughter (his wife left him and lives in Spain) joins the gang and turns into a Lara Croft-esque badass, and this little family rumbles along until the outside world starts creeping in and they decide that there aren’t enough people around to make money from.

All through this, we get radio and TV reports that everything is fine, and people should go about their day – as office buildings are blown up and the undead walk the streets. All this is, according to the official line, the work of US-funded terror groups or “dissidents” (there’s a great bit where Juan summons some zombies as a diversion by calling “hey, dissidents! Over here!”) The film certainly has some criticisms to make of Cuba and the way it’s run, but Juan’s “capitalism will eventually have its impact on us all” line near the end of the film shows there’s a debate being had here, and neither side comes out of it unscathed. They meet someone with an English name, who has a plan for escaping Cuba, but his English is heavily accented. Probably a dig by a Spanish-language filmmaker annoyed at the shoe usually being on the other foot, and subtly done.

Their group gets thinned out, but can they make it? Who’ll get off the island?

This film was just great. As a much smarter man than I once said, if you want to see what a country’s really like, look to its low-budget films. And “Juan of the Dead” is definitely low-budget, with the dirty backstreets, peeling paint and run-down…well, everything all around the film’s characters. But they use the incredible cheapness of the film to their advantage, I think, and aside from a few moderately ropey performances it has the feel of a much “bigger” film. There’s also a gleeful lack of “normal” film morality in “Juan of the Dead” – like when Lazaro sees, later on, the still-living guy who owed him money from earlier…

I think it’s important to discuss the role of sexuality in this film. China is a strong, independent character, and the rest of the cast’s problem with him seems to be that he’s a mouthy asshole, not that he’s gay; and it’s fairly well implied that El Primo is his lover, although thinking back I can’t remember if it’s more than hinted at. And there’s a weirdly touching moment between Juan and Lazaro near the end that I won’t spoil for you…but when Juan kills a zombie by forcing it onto a spike, ass-first, then scathingly says “sodomite” (where a normal action star would make a “don’t get up” quip) it leaves the non-prejudiced film viewer feeling rather uncomfortable. It’s not the only time either, and while it presumably reflects the homophobia of large portions of Cuba (homosexuality only became legal in 1979, but there’s still widespread oppression), it’s not good.

Aside from those criticisms, it’s an excellent film. Made me think, made me laugh and made me worry about how Juan and Lazaro were going to turn out.

Juan of the Dead on IMDB
Buy Juan of the Dead [DVD]

Leatherface: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3 (1990)

Directed by Jeff Burr

The wonderful thing about The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3 is that it was written and directed by people with a good sense of humour. A sick sense of humour, but a sense of humour nonetheless. Perhaps this is because everyone who was involved in making the movie was forced to cut and rewrite so many scenes just to get the film released that they eventually got fed up, and decided to make things completely and utterly ridiculous.

Leatherface is almost cartoonish, the Looney Tunes villain come to life that gets his comeuppance one, twice and thrice again. Contrary to how he was in the original, Leatherface is decidedly less menacing. Instead his psychotic, cannibalistic redneck family are a far far scarier proposition. You’ve got the greaseball with the hooked hand, Viggo Mortensen, a little blonde haired girl who carries a skeleton doll, a wheelchair bound matriarch who talks through a voicebox and lovable Grandpa’s lifeless corpse, who somehow steals the show by becoming the static ‘figure of fun’.

In ‘The Saw is Family’, the documentary making-of film that is part of the DVD’s extra features, it is explained that Leatherface is viewed as the rebellious teenager of the family, he goes out, causes trouble, and gets himself into scrapes. Referred to by other members of the family as ‘Junior’, his role is the big dumb kid who likes to destroy things and then when he settles, to waste time alone fiddling in his own private space.

New Line Cinema wanted to make Leatherface a franchise character in a similar vein to Freddy Krueger. Ignoring the fact that you couldn’t really sell a skin mask to kids in toy shops, and ‘Leatherface’ has no real personality, no quotable smart lines. He just grunts, and anything he does manage to say is drowned out by a bloody chainsaw.

Scream Queen Kate Hodge plays Michelle, who is your archetypal California girl, driving her Father’s nice car, hooked up with a nice but weak boyfriend. The couple are en route to Florida, but find themselves strangers in dusty ol’ Texas. They stop in a rusty ramshackle gas station and come across a gormless simpleton with a dodgy eye, and a handsome drifter called Tex played by a young Viggo Mortenson. Little do they know that Tex will lead them to a hellish destination populated by psychopaths.

Things go awry when the simpleton pervs on Kate Hodge through a peephole whilst she’s taking a leak. When the lady doth protest, the simpleton pulls out a shotgun, leaving poor old Tex to deal with the aftermath. The couple quickly flee the gas station, and when driving down a lonely road at night they encounter Leatherface for the first time. After a fright, they manage to escape, and drive on, until they are involved in a car accident with survivalist Ken Foree’s jeep. When Leatherface returns to the accident site the trio flee into wooded swampland, they end up meeting the family.

There are a variety of reasons why the film was critically panned, and New Line failed miserably when attempting to revive the Texas Chainsaw franchise. The ending of the film is bizarre to say the least, influenced by test screenings which basically instructed the filmmakers that Ken Foree must not die. Towards the end Foree grapples in swampy water with Leatherface as a massive silver chainsaw floats nearby; the masked man is able to gain the upper hand and pushes Foree’s head back into the chainsaw. Nobody could survive getting their skull cut open by the saw. But Ken Foree is no ordinary man, and sure enough he turns up right at the end of the film with a beaming smile on his face, patched up, and ready to kick ass again, after surviving an outbreak of zombies in ‘Dawn of the Dawn’ he was also able to negotiate his way past a chainsaw wielding maniac and his nutty family.

The cast and crew reveal a lot how Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3 flopped in the commentary. Those involved really hedged their bets on the controversy angle, though the original script written by splatterpunk pioneer David J. Schow featured a lot gore scenes that might have made it one of the most violent mainstream releases in film history at the time. Disappointingly many of which never made it past production. In actual fact, the uncut version of the film is quite tame, with many cut away shots made just as it looks like blood will be shed. The reason for such shots was to create suspense, so although a character may look like they’re dead meat, later on they’ll make a surprise return. This happened not just in the case of Foree, but also for Viggo Mortensen, the pervy wonky eyed simpleton, Kate Hodge’s boyfriend and unsurprisingly Leatherface.

Despite the ludicrous twists, and the lack of blood and guts Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3 is oddly absorbing, and certainly worth viewing.

– RJW

7/10

Leatherface: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3 on IMDB
Buy The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3: Leatherface [DVD]

Iron Sky (2012)

This is the film sites like this were designed for. If you’ve found your way here, then chances are you’ve at least seen some of the hype surrounding this, but what, you might well be asking, is the film actually like? I think we’ll be getting other reviews for this film from the other reviewers here, so be aware that the views expressed in this review do not represent the views of the entirety of the ISCFC.

There are too many ideas in this picture!

Also, I’m going to be spoilering the hell out of this film, so if you’ve not seen it yet, I’ll do a quick review for you, and then move on to the substantive spoilered review.

QUICK ONE: Don’t bother. It thinks it’s funnier and cleverer than it is.

LONG ONE: I don’t know if you’re fans of Futurama or not, but there’s a scene which made me laugh and stuck with me. The crew visit a planet populated by robots, and the robots make films where humans are the bad guys. Only they’re not humans – they’re robots with extremely unconvincing human “skins” over them. And that’s what this film felt like to me – as if a group of robots from another planet had decided to make a film about humans, had only the faintest understanding of human society, and were armed with a badly translated book of history.

So, the film. A Sarah Palin-alike President in 2018 has organised a trip to the moon to boost her approval ratings, and she’s sent a black male model as one of the crew. The posters up all over New York are “Black To The Moon”, which in the era of Obama seems oddly and irritatingly anachronistic. Also, there’s no way the guy they picked for the film was good looking enough to be a model. Hey, this stuff is important! So, they get to the Moon, and one of them takes a stroll over a hill, and sees…a gigantic Helium-3 mining operation, run by the Nazis! Their ship is blown up when the Nazis find out they’re there, and only the male model survives, taken prisoner. He appears to not know anything about history, as he tries to talk stereotypical black street language to them, and they just kick his ass.

The Nazis, it is hinted, found some alien technology and, escaping earth at the end of WW2, sent some people to the dark side of the moon to set up a base there, in a move which is never adequately explained. Well, they’re supposed to be mining the aforementioned Helium-3, which will provide virtually unlimited energy for the people of Earth, but never seem to do anything with it. I get the feeling that looking at the film in this sort of depth would be discouraged by the makers of the film, but there’s no reason why a film can’t be balls-to-the-wall insane and still bother to explain its main plot points. We get this information in a nice bit of school-room exposition, led by Renate Richtner (the lovely blonde woman you see at the top of this review), whose Dad is the main Nazi scientist. Ain’t that always the case? I feel like I ought to skip ahead a bit…the Nazis find the mobile phone that Male Model has brought with him, and instantly declare it to have more computing power than their entire base. Finally, they think, the power needed to run their Gotterdammerung machine! But the battery runs out after a few seconds, and although they can hook it up to their main computer, they can’t recharge it or anything like that.

Wow, I’m not skipping forward very far. Okay, Mark, game-face. They decide to take a trip to the Earth to find a mobile phone with 100% charge, and take Male Model with them. He’s been turned white with some serum, and apparently brainwashed too. They don’t bother doing anything as silly as checking to see the brainwashing stuck, so by the time they get to the Earth Male Model is back-talking and all sorts. He escapes the Nazi clutches, so they decide to kidnap the President’s publicist, who immediately falls in love with Man-Nazi. You may notice how a better-prepared reviewer would bother to learn their names, or would do a copy&paste when he’d looked them up, but not me! The President decides having a couple of space Nazis advising her on policy would be a good thing, and they get to work organising a war to keep the President in office.

Moonbase shaped like a swastika…okay, that bit I liked

Three months later! Male Model is now stood on a street corner with a straggly beard, trying to convince people that the Nazis are coming. Getting some make-up and a haircut and, I don’t know, going back to his old life seems out of the question for him. Still, if he did that how would the plot continue to rumble along? He meets up with the nice Nazi lady, who clearly believes all the propaganda about how the Nazis are really all about peace and goes up to a gang of shaven-headed thugs spraypainting swastikas and is mocked and pushed about for her trouble. So her and Male Model team up…Then my brain sort-of glossed over a bit. There was a fight, and the Bad Nazi (a qualifier I never thought I’d need to use) took an iPad and headed off back to the Moon to start up the Gotterdamerung (don’t worry, I had to check I’d already mentioned it in this review too). Did he want to stay on Earth and something happened to force him to go back? Or was he just really bad at finding a phone? I’ll leave that for you, reader, to figure out when you watch it yourself.

Space battle! All the countries of the world have their own heavily armed “satellites” in space, which they didn’t tell the President of the USA about! An organisation which is presumably supposed to be the UN degenerates into a mass brawl between the assembled world leaders! Can Good Nazi and Male Model save the world, and the innocent brainwashed Nazis on the moon?

Well, that’s enough about the film itself. I really didn’t like it, and here’s why. First up, it can’t decide what it wants to be – a comedy? A serious action film? A political satire? A steampunk action adventure? Perhaps in the hands of better filmmakers, this stew could have made something special but from these guys, it fell between way too many stools. The “satire” was exceptionally heavy-handed, to the point it felt like I was watching a porn parody of a real film I’d never seen. This also fed into the acting – especially Male Model and President Palin.

I think films which have really strange premises should and could have internal logic that allows you to not ponder why X is happening and just enjoy the film. Take, for instance, “Crank”, one of the most brilliant fast-paced and insane films of recent years, which has logic (of a sort). I’ve already mentioned a few of the more glaring plot holes in this film, but the main one for me is, why didn’t they just use the alien technology they’d got and win the war back in 1945? Why was their technology stuck in place, to the extent a mobile phone had more power than their entire base? Even if the world was really bad in 2018, wouldn’t we remember the Nazis were super-evil and not let them into the highest echelons of Government?

This film is a Finnish / German / Australian co-production, and the director is Finnish. It’s interesting to see what someone way outside America thinks of it and how they portray it on film. It becomes less interesting when you learn the director is in a “dark metal” band and has previously directed a couple of cheap sci-fi parodies.

Everything about this film just seems crude or silly, so I’m baffled as to how it’s entranced so many normally sensible reviewers and filmgoers. Well, I think it’s got something of the “Snakes On A Plane” or “Dead Snow” about it – a film with an excellent premise that has no idea of how to actually execute that premise. It’s not wild enough to be what it’s striving for, and it’s not well-made enough to qualify for your interest any other way. If I had to say something nice about it, I’d say that the world of the Nazis on the moon is fairly well thought out and looks decent.

My soon-to-be-traditional “one final thought” about this film – there are numerous references throughout this film to other, better anti-war films. A clip of “The Great Dictator” is played early on, and one of the characters attempts, Peter Sellers in Dr. Strangelove style, to suppress giving it the old Sieg Heil. Now, I’m all for using the rich tapestry of film history to illustrate points in new films, but if the film you’re making is no good, then having references to two of the best films of the 20th century in it will just make everything around it pale in comparison.

Rating: 1 star

Iron Sky on IMDB
Buy Iron Sky [DVD]