FILM REVIEW: OVERLORD

Overlord is mind blowing. Overlord is gory. Overlord has edge of your seat thrills. Overlord posterOverlord is so tense it has you biting your nails. Overlord is brutal, shocking, emotional, gut wrenching, explosive and humorous.

Have I sold it yet? No? Well I can go on and on. Forever.

Seriously.

It is that good.

Set in World War II, Overlord follows a band of soldiers who are on a mission in Nazi-occupied France to destroy a radio transmitter atop a church.

After their plane is attacked, the remaining soldiers work together with a young French woman to finish their mission.

However, they soon discover the church is a cover for horrendous war experiments and their mission puts them face to face with enemies beyond this world.

This is my favourite horror film of the year. I think it is the horror film of the year. Possibly of the decade. I am in awe of how fantastic it is.

Now, I apologise I am fan girling all over it. But it’s pretty much perfect.

I spent nearly two hours in various emotional states: repelled and shocked and devastated and happy. I laughed, I cried, I felt sick and I sat, as the credits rolled, with the biggest smile on my face.

Because I had witnessed something truly special. This is real horror.

It definitely helps that it’s an 18 certificate. It wouldn’t have worked if they had toned it down to suit a 15 or (God forbid), 12A audience.

WafnerAnd I see that it hasn’t done very well at the box office. And this is devastating.

Yes, all horror fans have areas of the genre that we prefer. But what are the scariest films? The ones that could really happen? E.g. Scream or I Know What You Did Last Summer. This is also a war film. A war that really happened. War that has happened, will happen and is happening.

“A thousand-year army. It’s thousand-year soldiers”

War is utterly terrifying. More terrifying than we could ever imagine. This is why this film is so brilliant. It’s enthralling. It’s an emotional rollercoaster. And it’s real.

Even if you’re not into bloody, gory horror or enjoy watching war films, I beg you to head to the cinema now and watch it. Several times.

This is exactly the horror film we’ve all been crying out for.

Overlord film stillThere is some beautiful imagery, including a jellyfish-esque parachute and soldiers hanging from trees against an explosive backdrop.

Boyce & RosenfeldThe actors are convincing and well-cast with the antagonist, Boyce (Jovan Adepo) effectively portraying a rabbit in headlights becoming the bravest soldier of them all.

And bully, Tibbet (John Magaro) providing much needed humour (which doesn’t detract from the story the way it does in the new Halloween).

Also the lead female, Chloe (Mathilde Ollivier) is no damsel in distress. She is a bad ass; she’s exactly the role model women need in horror.

She’s certainly my new favourite “scream queen” (although that title doesn’t suit her at all). Alongside her young brother, Paul (Gianny Taufer) who is the cutest kid to ever grace the silver screen, she steals every scene.Chloe is the ultimate leading lady

Obviously, it’s not perfect. The soldiers are rather stereotypical (the leader, the bully, the hero) but it tends to work in a war setting. And the baddie, Wafner (Pilou Asbæk) becomes a little caricature, but he’s still scary.

But they’re the only faults I can really find. And they’re not really faults.

Overlord’s opening battle sequence is the best I’ve seen since Saving Private Ryan, it’s the biggest bloodbath I’ve seen since Rambo (2008) and it’s the most emotional connection I’ve had to a merry band of soldiers since the brilliant Dog Soldiers.

There are even elements of Captain America and it’s everything Eli Roth’s Hostel promised and didn’t deliver.

Soldiers commencing their mission

“Three months ago I was cuttin’ grass on my front yard”

Watching this film so close to Remembrance Day makes it even more of an amazing experience. War is all around us. It’s happening right now. And although this film is immensely entertaining, it also carries an important message. A message about the state of our world and the way humanity treats each other.

See Overlord as a horror fan and leave wanting to be a better human.

This film deserves to do better at the box office than Halloween, Get Out, Happy Death Day, Hereditary and all the other amazing horrors we’ve had of late because, as good as they all are, they’re nowhere near as good as this.

Chloe & BoyceOverlord is the horror of the year. Possibly the decade. Possibly beyond.

I’m not exaggerating.

A HUGE thank you to Julius Avery (director), Billy Ray and Mark L. Smith (screenwriters), J.J Abrams (producer) et al.

Overlord is fantastic, incredible, outstanding work.

You have set a new standard for horror.

By Cat Dunn

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