Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Film Review: Iron Sky

I re-watched this one to review it for you guys because this movie does what I thought was a really interesting thing. It's definitely got some heavy dieselpunk elements in the Space Nazi side of things, in a very over-the-top way. It's meant to be ridiculous though, and the movie doesn't take itself too seriously at all.

The thing I find interesting though is the way they handled the Nazis. It's always risky to use Nazis in a comedy, because the Holocaust is so very much a sacred cow, and you don't want to make jokes about that.

These Nazis left the earth before the holocaust, though. The premise is that Germany had a space program and sent colonists off to live on the dark side of the moon. These people are unaware of the Holocaust - only of German nationalism to a comical extreme. The irony of course is this.

That's right - the American president thinks "This is brilliant - this is how to win an election!" and applies the German nationalist message to American nationalism.

And the audience watching the movie thinks "What the hell? Do these guys remember what these people did to the Jews/Rom/gays/mentally disabled, etc?"

And the interesting thing is that it's never once mentioned in the entire movie. Were they trying to pretend it didn't happen for the sake of the movie? How can you have a movie about Nazis without acknowledging the Holocaust?

But the answer is actually easy. It's because the writers know that there isn't going to be one single person who watches the movie who isn't aware of the Holocaust, and isn't going to have it in the back of their mind as they watch it. They wrote it assuming that we would be thinking about it, knowing that they wouldn't have to remind us "Hey, by the way audience members, you remember what the result of this extreme Nationalism was right?" They assumed their audience wasn't stupid. (Rare thing, I know - probably because the movie wasn't made in the USA.)

Keep your eye out for a follow-up post to this - there's a bit of a controversial topic I'd like to discuss.

Rating it eight cylinders.

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