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REVIEWS


PANORAMA SPECIAL


Fin-Aus-Ger. 2012. 93mins Director Timo Vuorensola Production companies Blind Spot Pictures, 27 Films Production, New Holland Pictures, Energia Productions International sales Stealth Media Group, www. stealthmediagroup.com Producer Tero Kaukomaa Co-producers Oliver Damian, Cathy Overett, Mark Overett Executive producers San Fu Maltha, Michael Cowan, Sean O’Kelly Screenplay Michael Kalesniko, Timo Vuorensola, based on a story by Johanna Sinisalo and a concept by Jarmo Puskala Cinematography Mika Orasmaa Editor Suresh Ayyar Production designer Ulrika von Vegesack Music Laibach Main cast Julia Dietze, Gotz Otto, Christopher Kirby, Tilo Pruckner, Udo Kier, Peta Sergeant, Stephanie Paul, Michael Cullen


Iron Sky REVIEWED BY MARK ADAMS


Iron Sky revels in its B-movie status, and tip-toeing a fine line in political incorrectness it unleashes sci-fi special-effects mayhem onto an unsuspecting world… well, certainly a world that has no idea a secret Nazi space programme evaded destruction at the end of the Second World War and relocated to the dark side of the Moon, awaiting the perfect moment for a Fourth Reich. The concept for this freewheeling sci-fi comedy is a strong


one and for a good deal of the time it delivers good-natured genre entertainment, with the cast sensibly taking it all very seriously and the film punctuated with some impressive action effects that belie the modest budget. Genre fans should lap up the film, and while the lack of known stars and the fact it is par- tially subtitled should affect its ability to break out there is no denying the film’s marketing buzz. Though the majority of Iron Sky’s $9.9m (¤7.5m) budget


came from traditional sources, close to $1.3m (¤1m) came from fans, and the social-networking support for the film should not be underestimated. The secret Nazi base on the moon is deemed under invasion


when US astronaut/male model James Washington (Kirby) lands his lunar capsule a bit too close to the Nazis’ helium- mining operation. He is captured and dragged off to be inter- rogated by Nazis who think he may be part of an advance force… when in fact he is only there as part of a publicity stunt for the US president (Paul). When the Nazis see the computing power in Washington’s


humble mobile phone, they realise only on Earth can they find the processing power to finally launch their flagship spacecraft, the massive Gotterdammerung, so two Nazi officers, ruthlessly ambitious Klaus Adler (Otto) and idealistic English-speaking teacher Renate Richter (Dietze), are sent to Earth to snag some more mini-computers. But Klaus has other plans. Initially allying himself with the


president and her super-sexy adviser Vivian Wagner (Sergeant) he plots to usurp the Moon führer (a nicely droll performance by cult favourite Udo Kier) and take over for himself. There are some delicious moments — such as the petite and


striking Julia Dietze playing her classroom of children a clip from Charlie Chaplin’s The Great Dictator to show the benevo- lent ambitions of Hitler — balanced by some truly impressive special effects. The Nazi invasion of Earth, with giant zeppelins dragging moon rock to catapult at the planet, and the space dogfights (with the USS George W Bush leading the fightback) are quite brilliant. In fact, as long as these Nazis are still spacebound the film is


at its best. When it reaches Earth, the story struggles to regain momentum, despite the game efforts of Gotz Otto (who played Herr Stamper in Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies) and Dietze (playing her role as demure but sexy), who between them hold together the film.


n 16 Screen International at the Berlinale February 13, 2012


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