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Review: Overlord

(L-r) Mathilde Ollivier and Jovan Adepo star in Paramount Pictures' OVERLORD

Overlord isn’t the type of WWII movie that’s looking to offer historical accuracy. If you’re like me and knew at least a small amount about this beforehand, you’re not too surprised by that revelation. So while it’s not here for that purpose, it is here hoping to excite its audience with a tale that doesn’t truly fit one specific genre. That’s something that improves the movie to an extent since they cover familiar territory while mixing things together to make it feel fresher than it actually is.

Within mere hours of D-Day, a group of American paratroopers are dropped into Nazi-occupied France with an order to destroy a radio transmitter set on top a fortified church. Setup in a village not too far from their intended target, the soldiers must plan and be prepared from whatever their opposition brings. That was to be expected, but after some investigating, they realize that the odds are even worse than they originally figured. Not only because of the sheer numbers they’re up against, but also because the enemy that they’re about to face is unlike any adversary in the history of mankind.

As it turns out, Overlord is basically an old-school B-movie with better technology than what they had to work with back in the days where these types of flicks were a more prominent segment of entertainment. In some ways, this is a very basic form of movie making. It has its purpose, it executes it, and gets us to where we need to be. Along that journey, nothing is blatantly left untouched or ignored by flawed or careless filmmaking. Because of that, it’s easy to follow and delivers the carnage that you were probably anticipating.

Before seeing it, I figured it would be some kind of horror movie. While there are some elements that come from that genre, it’s difficult to say that it’s even trying to be a scary movie. It’s weird because it doesn’t really fit into one specific category. It’s part horror, part thriller, part action movie while all being neatly packed into a WWII picture that somehow never overtly gets into politics of any kind.

The action and violence we get in Overlord feeds into all aspects of what the film has to offer, but it may be a bit viewed as excessive in the eyes of some. The body count isn’t something we haven’t seen before, but the blood and gore that it’s accompanied by are essential components that fit right along side of it. Obviously, I don’t personally have an issue with it myself. In fact, I think it helps the movie.

Of course, the special effects aid in this stuff as well. I didn’t expect the special effects to be as good as they were due to thinking that this would be a movie that might not bring in a large chunk of money at the box office. I guess one way they were able to manage it was to limit what they showed us. We get a glimpse of some of the craziness taking place, but it never really dominates the screen like it would in a typical film that relies on effects.

In taking everything into account, I can say that Overlord is not a memorable movie or one that you have to rush out to see. However, being disappointed after watching it is highly unlikely. I don’t expect it to receive too much fanfare from the masses, but I do anticipate a sense of gratification from those who do decide to visit their local theater at some point in time to check it out.

Rating: R

Director: Julius Avery

Jovan Adepo
Wyatt Russell
Pilou Asbaek
Mathilde Ollivier
John Magaro
Iain de Caestecker

Film Length: 110 minutes

Release Date: November 9, 2018

Distributor: Paramount Pictures

  • Score - 6.5/10
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