"it's best enjoyed as a good WWII action film with overtones of horror"
Overlord is the latest offering from producer J.J. Abrams. It is an action/horror film set during the latter part of WWII. A group of allied American paratroopers are despatched to Nazi occupied France in order to disable a German radio tower on the eve of the D-Day landings, before the landings can commence. During their mission to take down the tower, not only do the soldiers have to battle Nazi soldiers, but also humanoid creatures created as a result of German genetic experiments.
Overlord begins with an adrenaline filled opening reminiscent of Saving Private Ryan with a fleet of planes approaching France during which many are shot down including the plane with our protagonists, leaving only five survivors. Their mission is to locate and destroy a German radio tower located in a church to facilitate the D-Day landings.
Once the five surviving soldiers regroup they embark on their mission. En route to the village the soldiers encounter an initially hostile French woman on the outskirts of the village who had been scavenging there. She agrees to help them and take them to the location of the radio tower.
In the village the soldiers take refuge and hide in the woman's house whilst formulating their plans further. They learn she lives in the dwelling with her younger brother and her aunt who has been subjected to Nazi experiments that are taking place in the laboratory in the church, leaving her disfigured.
Whilst watching the church one of the allied soldiers Boyce (Jovan Adepo) witnesses the Nazis burning villagers who had been formally experimented on with flame throwers. During his observation he is chased by a guard dog, from which he escapes by jumping into the back of a truck, which to his horror is filled with dead bodies.
The truck having been driven into the German headquarters Boyce seeks to escape through the maze of passages and corridors. Here he sees the horrors of the various Nazi experiments taking place in the underground laboratory and realises it's not only the German soldiers they'll be facing, but something much more horrific and terrifying.
Although Overlord is being commercially marketed as a horror film, it's best enjoyed as a good WWII action film with overtones of horror, thus an action/horror hybrid to avoid being disappointed by the lack of 'horror' in a film with a run time of 110 minutes. On this level it certainly earns a very watchable four stars.