ReviewWriter: Syahida KamarudinWriter Ratings:Overall: Cast: Plot: Effects: Cinematography: Watch this if you liked:
"Apt Pupil", "Stauffenberg"
Hollywood has lots of obsessions. Terrorism is one thing. Choosing a suave guy to be their President is another. And then there's the 'politically-correct' representation of the Fuhrer. Time and time again, audiences are fed with this notion of how evil Adolf Hitler is through many ways be it an in-your-face movie like "Hitler: The Rise of Evil" or smaller roles (but still evil) like in "Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade" and "Valkyrie".
It's a shame, that while it was meant to highlight the famous July 20, 1944 plot that was triggered by the German resistance with Colonel Claus Von Stauffenberg as its mastermind, the movie cannot help itself from depicting Hitler and his subordinates in such over-the-top manner. Here it means, dark scary background score for every scene that has Hitler in it, coupled with dramatic entrance and thick German accent, while looking like a monster with a peculiar moustache. It has somehow tainted the movie's supposedly 'based-on-a-true-event' tag through its dramatic depiction.
There isn't much to say about the cast especially Tom Cruise, as at times you don't feel sympathetic to what his character (or any other character) has been through. Bill Nighy as General Friedrich Olbricht is competent, but the rest are just there to fill in the roles. And weirdly enough, some characters have American accent, some British, and some - which mostly are the GESTAPO men - has eerie German accent. It might look trivial but it made the movie loose its appeal.
On the more positive side, the wardrobes used were excellent. The costumes emphasised the differences in ranks, departments, and ministries and in a way it helps those who are not familiar with Nazi government to differentiate who, what and which especially when it involves scenes like the coup d'etat where three different situations are occurring simultaneously. The settings were also interestingly built, such as the Wolf's Lair, the Ministry of War and the GESTAPO headquarter.
Don't be fooled by the thought that "Valkyrie" is an action packed movie. The Tunisia battle would be the only battle scene that is worth the action. Watch this if you are in love with Tom Cruise or if you love anything World War II-related.Cinema Online, 06 February 2009