Starring: Jovan Adepo, Wyatt Russell, Mathilde Ollivier, Pilou Asbaek
Director: Julius Avery
Boyce (Adepo) is a US soldier dropped into occupied France towards the end of the war. As most of his unit are killed, he finds himself and a few other survivors following Ford (Russell) a hardened soldier on a mission to take down a communications tower in a small village. As they fall in with local girl Chloe (Ollivier), they find out that the Nazi’s have been conducting experiments on the local population, with some very dark results.
This film sits in the body horror genre, so it doesn’t stick too closely to reality or historical accuracy, but it is inspired loosely by experiments the Nazi’s invented to try to create super-soldiers and other experiments on civilians. It’s the kind of film that asks you to leave your credulity at the door, and just go along for the ride. And in that sense, it’s quite a successful film.
Adepo is Boyce, our protagonist and entry point into this film, and he’s firmly established as the kind of guy who cares about people and who would rather save a mouse than poison it. His ability to look genuinely scared and horrified, and then be able to build on that terror as the film escalates, is really impressive. He’s the voice of reason, not hardened by the things he’s seen, like Ford, he objects to torture. What he’s faced with is the reality of true evil.
Ollivier as Chloe was a really nice addition too. A young woman who has only her young brother and an aunt suffering the effects of the Nazi experiments left, she’s given moments of fear and vulnerability, but also of wielding a flame thrower. On the flip side, John Magaro as a wise cracking Italian American is incredibly annoying and loud throughout the film. I kept hoping he would get killed off early. I won’t tell you whether he does or not.
It’s one of those action/horror films that on the whole, works. If you care about things like historical accuracy or character motivation, you might find holes in this film. But you’d be missing the point. It’s the kind of film that delivers on tension, action and bloody scenes, while having a decent plot. It’s all a bit silly, but it’s always entertaining.
See It If: you like gore or body horror. It’s not one to take too seriously, but it’s got good performances and some genuine scares and tension. Good fun.