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ENTERTAINMENT ONE

MOVIE INFO

Director:
Timo Vuorensola
Cast:
Julia Dietze, Christopher Kirby, Götz Otto, Peta Sergeant, Udo Kier, Stephanie Paul
Writing Credits:
Johanna Sinisalo (original story), Jarmo Puskala (original concept), Michael Kalesniko, Timo Vuorensola

Tagline:
Get Ready, The Fourth Reich Is Here.

Synopsis:
In 1945 a secret Nazi space program fled to the Dark Side of the Moon where they constructed a giant fortress and a massive armada of flying saucers. Their plan: travel back to Earth and re-colonize.

MPAA:
Rated R

DVD DETAILS
Presentation:
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
Audio:
English/German DTS-HD MA 5.1
English/German Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles:
English (For German Dialogue Only)
Closed-captioned
Supplements Subtitles:
None

Runtime: 92 min.
Price: $24.98
Release Date: 10/2/2012

Bonus:
• Audio Commentary with Director Timo Vuorensola and Producer/Visual Effects Producer Samuli Torssonen
• “Making Of” Featurette
• “Behind the Scenes” Footage
• Theatrical Trailers and Previews


PURCHASE @ AMAZON.COM

EQUIPMENT
Panasonic 50" TH-50PZ77U 1080p Plasma Monitor; Sony STR-DG1200 7.1 Channel Receiver; Panasonic DMP-BD60K Blu-Ray Player using HDMI outputs; Michael Green Revolution Cinema 6i Speakers (all five); Kenwood 1050SW 150-watt Subwoofer.

RELATED REVIEWS


Iron Sky [Blu-Ray] (2012)

Reviewed by Colin Jacobson (December 28, 2012)

When its creators pitched 2012’s Iron Sky, I suspect they uttered a mere four words: “Nazis from the Moon!” That’s the tale we get in this high-concept comedy/action flick.

Set in 2018, an American manned mission to the Moon finds a secret Nazi base. We learn that in 1945, Germans sent a crew up to the Moon to hide in the Dark Side and eventually send soldiers to the Earth to conquer the planet. The Nazis capture Astronaut James Washington (Christopher Kirby) and use the technology in his cell phone to advance their plans. Nazi leaders Klaus Adler (Götz Otto) and Renate Richter (Julia Dietze) take Washington back to the Earth to gain access to more phones and eventually launch the invasion.

When I go into a film like Iron Sky, I don’t expect much. However, I do want it to live up – or down, if you will – to the absurdity of its concept. “Nazis from the Moon” is a pretty basic conceit, and one that would seem to be hard to mess up – all we want is some fun, campy action and we’re happy.

Alas, Sky can’t even get that right. It fancies itself as a smarter movie than it actually is. It wants to deliver a biting political satire and score with its observational humor.

Unfortunately, these elements flop. I figured I was in trouble when I first saw the film’s President (Stephanie Paul), as the movie turns her into an obvious Sarah Palin clone – visually, at least, as for reasons unknown, she speaks with a Southern accent. It’s already a lame gimmick to make “Palin” the President, but if you choose to embrace that notion, why not go all the way and at least make fun of her actual accent?

Sky inspires a whole lot of “why” questions as it goes, for it makes a series of perplexing choices. Why does an astronaut take a cell phone on a mission? Why does this same astronaut talk like a refugee from a 1970s Blaxploitation flick?

And why is there a presidential election in 2018? Perhaps that choice intends to make Sky seem more like a fantasy, but it’s unexplained and illogical – and a distraction, as the viewer will constantly wait for the movie to provide a rationale that never comes.

Sky tries to straddle action and comedy but fails. The movie moves in a slow, clumsy pace, as it abruptly halts to deliver awkward exposition. The characters consistently seem bland and forgettable, and the dialogue matches; there’s no wit or cleverness on display.

Even when the Nazi invasion finally occurs, it almost feels like an afterthought. I understand that Sky is a fairly low budget film so it couldn’t go nuts with its battle scenes, but I think it could’ve achieved more excitement than it delivers. The invasion is simple and barely a factor in the movie.

Look, all we want from a film like this is a wacky twist on War of the Worlds. Gimme some silly action and fun and I’m happy. Unfortunately, Iron Sky lacks even the basics necessary to make it a winning comedy/adventure.


The Blu-ray Grades: Picture B-/ Audio B+/ Bonus B-

Iron Sky appears in an aspect ratio of approximately 2.35:1 on this Blu-Ray Disc. This was a decent but unexceptional presentation.

Sharpness seemed a little erratic. Most of the movie delivered fairly good clarity, but occasional shots appeared a bit ill-defined. Still, overall accuracy seemed fine. No issues with jagged edges or shimmering occurred, and edge haloes were absent. I saw no print flaws, either.

Don’t expect a dynamic palette from Iron Sky. Much of the movie seemed essentially monochromatic, especially on the Moon; Earth scenes boasted a wider sense of color, but even these remained subdued. The hues worked fine within those paramerers. Blacks seemed tight and dense, but shadows could be a little thick; they weren’t overly dense, but they could’ve given us better clarity. Nothing here excelled, but the image was adequate.

I felt more pleased with the DTS-HD MA 5.1 soundtrack of Iron Sky. An active and involving affair, the soundfield provided a good sense of environment. Quieter scenes kept us in the game with nice atmospheric elements, and the action sequences brought the mix to life in a positive manner. The film’s soundscape didn’t dazzle, but it added solid involvement to the story.

Sound quality worked fine. Speech was consistently natural and crisp, with no issues related to intelligibility or edginess. The score was always rich and showed good definition. Effects blasted home the action nicely, as they were accurate and dynamic. All in all, this soundtrack delivered the goods.

When we shift to extras, we start with an audio commentary from director Timo Vuorensola and producer/visual effects producer Samuli Torssonen. Both sit together for this running, screen-specific look at the project’s origins and development, story/character/script issues, cast and performances, various effects, costumes and production design, sets and locations, and a mix of other topics.

From beginning to end, we get a very nice commentary here. Vuorensola dominates and packs in a ton of good information. We find many useful details and even some answers to questions like why the “Sarah Palin” character doesn’t share the politician’s accent. This turns into a thoroughly enjoyable chat.

A ”Making Of” Featurette lasts 17 minutes, 22 seconds and includes notes from Vuorensola, Torssonen, original idea creator/community manager Jarmo Puskala, producer Tero Kaukomaa, director of photography Mika Orasmaa, production designer Ulrika Von Vegesack, producers Oliver Damian and Mark and Cathy Overett, and actors Julia Dietze, Udo Kier, Christopher Kirby, and Götz Otto. The show covers the project’s origins and development, budget and visual effects, sets and locations, cast and performances, and themes. The featurette proves to be surprisingly solid. It moves at a brisk pace and packs a fair amount of information into its brief running time.

Under Behind the Scenes, we find 18 snippets. These fill a total of 18 minutes, 13 seconds as they show raw footage from the shoot. I like this kind of material, and this becomes a good little compilation.

The disc opens with an ad for Cosmopolis. We also get a trailer and three teasers for Iron Sky itself.

No one expects greatness from a campy “B”-movie like Iron Sky, but I’d like something more involving than this dud. Amateurish and dull, the flick can’t even deliver basic action fun. The Blu-ray comes with generally positive picture and audio as well as a handful of supplements that includes a strong commentary. Overall, the Blu-ray works fine, but the movie’s not very interesting.

Viewer Film Ratings: 2 Stars Number of Votes: 1
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