Run time: 90 mins
In Theaters: Friday 20th May 2011
Distributed by: Metrodome Group
Production compaines: Giant Films, Panaramic, Moskus Film, Cinema Five, Neon Park, Metrodome Distribution, ContentFilm, Regent Capital, Matador Pictures, Prime Focus, Magna Films, Atlantic Swiss Productions
Contactmusic.com: 2 / 5
Rotten Tomatoes: 40%
Fresh: 2 Rotten: 3
IMDB: 5.6 / 10
Director: Adrian Vitoria
Producer: James Brown, Lex Lutzus, Nick O'Hagan, James Youngs
Screenwriter: Ed Scates, Adrian Vitoria
Starring: Sean Bean as Maj. Jack Jones, Izabella Miko as Jensen, Danny Dyer as Cpl. Bob Rains, James D'Arcy as Lt. Cdr. Ian Fleming, Sebastian Street as RMP Col. Archer, William Houston as Sgt. MacKenzie, John Dagleish as Flt. Sgt. Roger Rollright, John Dagleish as Cpl. Syd Brightling, Rosie Fellner as Sophie Holbrook, Erik Madsen as Teichman, Ewan Ross as Gable, Jay Simpson as RMP Company Sergeant Major, Daniel Brocklebank as RMP Sgt. Hamilton, Timothy Watson as RMP Captain, Timothy Watson as Riley
In 1940, Captain Jones (Bean) is assigned to lead a clandestine mission into occupied Norway to capture German technology that could turn the tide of the war. He recruits a team of crack commandos, including the brave hothead Rains (Dyer) and the Norwegian-Yank Steinar (Hennie). But they have a very rough landing in Norway, their spy contact (Miko) isn't who they expect and the ruthless Nazis quickly catch up with them. Can they get in, do their job and get out? Or will they need plan B?
The action isn't hugely convincing from the start, which appears to have been filmed in a London park rather than the wilds of France. Things look better in snowy Norway, but there are still so few extras that it sometimes seems more like an amateur re-enaction. And the abrupt ending comes as a surprise, feeling more like the end of a chapter than a movie. It turns out that this is the first in a planned trilogy.
That said, there are some seriously suspenseful sequences along the way, as these guys dive into several dangerous situations. The Nazis are gleeful sadists, merrily torturing captives and murdering innocent bystanders, which is somewhat cartoonish but adds a sense of terror to the film. Although the action set pieces are awkwardly staged and edited, never quite capturing the real feeling of combat.
And the corny script very nearly defeats the actors. Most make it through with their dignity intact, mainly because they play it dead straight. Even the slightest smirk would have sent this into Team America territory with all of the cut-glass accents and tally-ho heroics. At times we can feel the cast and crew straining to create a tough hard-man sensibility, but it's the melodramatic emotion that's more convincing ("How many fatherless children will there be once this war is done," pleads Jones' pregnant wife). At least the strength of the overall story keeps us from laughing too much.