Movie review: 'Overlord'
Brooke Nicholson | Arts & Entertainment Editor
J.J. Abrams is back again - but not with another movie in the "Cloverfield" franchise. When you see J.J.'s name on anything, you know it's about to go down.
Set just a few days before D-Day during World War II, a few paratroopers have been tasked with a mission to drop into Nazi-occupied France and take down a radio transmitter from atop a church tower. Once they land, they recruit the help of a young rogue French villager to get closer to the church, but once one of the soldiers, Boyce, scopes out the basement underneath it, he discovers something much worse lurking underground.
With the discovery of a Nazi-run super lab operating below the church, the soldiers must make a choice - ignore it to continue the mission, or stop whatever the lab has growing within it.
The primary announcement of "Overlord" came just a few months ago, and was kept very secret up until that point. Any project that J.J. Abrams works on is always speculation for belonging to the epic "Cloverfield" franchise, and fans were a bit disappointed once revealed in an official statement from Paramount Pictures that this film is not connected to the "Cloverfield" universe in any sense.
Besides that, the film was well received by most critics, and earned a decent 85 percent on Rotten Tomatoes. The movie's opening weekend launched over $10 million on its Friday opening day, and came in third to Queen's biopic "Bohemian Rhapsody" and the animated Chirstmas film, "The Grinch."
While "Overlord" seems likes a typical intense war-driven action flick, it does offer twists like no other to give audiences keep coming back for more. With strong performances by most of the cast, "Overlord" is not for the faint of heart, but is a must-see for creature-feature fans. "Overlord" doesn't play up too heavily on the horrors trapped beneath the church, but tries to give equal screen time for everything else.
The opening sequence might have been one of the best scenes in the entire film, and really sets the mood for the rest of the movie. It's extremely intense, gore-driven formula works with a couple of heartbreaking moments to balance out the mix, all while flame throwing Nazi's at every turn.
Although the movie boasts similar themes to its other counterparts, it stands out enough on its own to warrant it special and unique.
Even with the high score it received from critics and audiences alike, critics were disappointed that Paramount Pictures did not allow enough of "Overlord's" $38 million budget to advertising. The movie still did fairly well for so little advertisement and branding, with fans excited to see what Abrams has to offer up in the future, even if it's not within the "Cloverfield" franchise.