Ratings (2.5 out of 5)
Overlord has a few moments of fun offset by odd relationships and no clear objective for our heroes. These result in a flat action flick.
Plot: During D-Day paratroopers drop into France to destroy a radio tower and stumble across an evil Nazi experiment.
An action movie has to connect the audience to the hero. You must clearly understand their motivations. The heroes motivations must be black or white and they are relentless about following their motivations. An example of good motivation in an action can be found in Die Hard. John McClain is a cop and doesn’t see any other career, so he loves catching bad guys. However, he also loves his wife and is here because he lovers her. When he faces the terrorist we fully understand his motivations and therefore understand his objectives; kill bad guys and save wife.
In Overlord we have 3 heroes; Boyce (Jovan Adepo), Ford (Wyatt Russell), and Chloe (Mathilde Ollivier). We don’t have a clue about Boyce’s motivation until he sees the experiments but they didn’t ever establish a connection to why it was so important to save them. They tried to set his motivation with the mouse story, but ends being an epic fail.
Ford’s goal is clear on his goal, destroying the radio tower but they never established a motivator of why he is so focused on the order. Did he have a hate of the Nazis, a desire to get home, losing friends in a prior mission, etc.. We needed some source motivation so we could understand the focus on the order. Again, the movie hints at an event in Italy but we were not provided any clarity. Without understanding his motivation, Ford is a mindless Automatons who we didn’t care about.
Chloe’s motivation is the clearest of all, save her brother at all cost. They even gave us a sample of what she does to keep her brother safe. Her motivation is focused and therefore we understood and root for her character in the pursuit of her goal
The action scenes of the movie are alright. Some felt a bit extended to create excitement. For example, when Ford sets his timer and the Nazi destroys the timer before the explosives are detonated. An unnecessary extension of the action and poor script writing.
In order for action movies to be run, the action sequences must border on real and unreal. Hard to believe 4 men could take on a garrison like they did. How come the good guys are the only crack shots and the bad guys are incompetent? Even when they are on the run, the Nazis can’t shoot them. Unreal action sequences like these result weaken the film overall.
Finally, I am glad to see black actors more roles in movies. However, from what I have read, there wasn’t integrated forces until later in the war. Therefore the integration here wouldn’t have actually existed, and is another element of fantasy.
Conclusion: A lack of good character development, mediocre action sequence, and oh so many problems make Overlord a hard movie to watch. I would pass on Overlord film until it comes on the streaming service, and then only watch if there is absolutely nothing else to watch. I don’t feel any need to ever watch Overlord film again.