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Iron Sky Review

The year: 2018. The mission: search Earth’s largest satellite for Helium-3, a rare light, non-radioactive isotope of helium highly sought for use in nuclear fusion research. But as they say, in space nobody can hear a Nazi Shock Trooper shoot an astronaut in the face with a Luger and drag his partner off to their swastika-shaped base on the dark side of the moon where they augment his skin to make him Aryan and then send him back to Earth on a scouting mission to prep for an invasion of dirigible-shaped space shuttles.That’s how that goes, right? Iron Sky – now out on DVD and Blu-ray – is likely one of the strangest films you’re ever likely to see and not just because of its outlandish B-movie premise, but also in how it goes about orchestrating such bizarre events. There is attempted satire with a Sarah Palin-esque president, an unintelligibly explained relationship that spawns between this commander and chief and some of the moon Nazis, a pseudo love story, alien invasion tropes and most strangely at least what I think was an attempt to humanize some of the Nazis by stating that “mankind” (i.e. The U.S.) is the real monster. It works in Avatar, not so much here. That being said, at least Iron Sky seems fully aware of its utter absurdity and doesn’t seem to care one bit what people may think. It’s doing its thing, take it or leave it. This Finnish-German-Australian experiment comes from relative newcomer Timo Vuorensola (who has a sci-fi spoof trilogy called “Star Wreck” to his name). He clearly has some fun ideas swirling around his head, but I think his labors would be better suited to the short film format. Existing as such a bizarre beast, it’s truly difficult (and somewhat unfair for that matter) to judge this film on normal cinematic terms regarding “quality.” That being said, Iron Sky does fail rather unequivocally when concerning its dialogue. When it comes to a script of this nature there is an intentionally corny avenue and then there is just the embarrassing path – fully without skill or art. It’s quite clear Vuorensola has no handle on this distinction and the groan-inducing tedium that results makes Iron Sky seem far longer than it is. There are some inspired moments of wit that could actually be considered successful satire, but almost exclusively this B-flick rides on its premise and its premise alone.
Vuorensola does manage to land some solid performers for Iron Sky, though unfortunately he’s recruited some equally horrendous ones (a lady known as Peta Sergeant should never act again) that seem all the more incompetent when delivering the inane dialogue. On the positive side of things we have the great character actor Udo Kier as Fürer Wolfgang Kortzfleisch, though he doesn’t get much screen time, and German television actor Götz Otto as the slimy successor to the Nazi throne (?). The standout is the gorgeous Julia Dietze as a school teacher from the moon base who switches sides when she sees the true intentions of her government. Even among the schlock she is utterly alluring and is someone I would love to see in, you know, a real movie. If there is one thing to praise outright with Iron Sky it’s the special effects, which have been rendered incredibly well considering the budget. If this effort had looked as cheap and tacky as the script would have us believe, we’d have a true disaster on our hands. Those who will whole-heartedly love Iron Sky will be far and in between (exploitation fans rejoice!) so for most this will come off as a dopey lark and not much more. In the hands of someone who really understood satire and genre deconstructions, Iron Sky could have been a blast, but as it stands it’s simply trash cinema with a goose-stepping twist.


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