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Sunday, November 13, 2011

Iron Sky 2012

Towards the end of World War II, in 1945, the SS officer Hans Kammler’s staff made a significant breakthrough in anti-gravity research. From a secret base built in the Antarctic, the first Nazi spaceships were launched in late ‘45, and they founded the military base Schwarze Sonne (Black Sun) on the so-called dark side of the Moon. The purpose of this base was to build a powerful invasion fleet and return to take over the Earth once the time was right.

Recently I've stumbled across a motion picture project that seems to encompass both. Iron Sky is a Finnish/German production slated to debut in 2011 that features an invasion of Earth from Nazis who have spend the last 73 years hiding on the far side of the moon. Sound a little improbable?
The film is a being made by Energia Productions, Blind Spot Pictures and co-produced by 27 Films. Who are these guys? After all Finland hardly seems a hotbed of cinematic activity. Well, perhaps the most visible member of the group is Timo Vuorensola. Vuorensola is a Finnish director who has worked on commercials and music videos. About a decade ago he and group of friends started making fan films in a series entitled Star Wreck. Now, as many of your are aware a fan film can be a primitive as a couple kids with toy light sabers who borrow their Dad's video camera for an hour and upload the results to you tube. Or in can be a sophisticated as Star Trek: Phase II an operation that rivals, and in certain aspects - like special effects - surpasses the quality of the original series.

The Star Wreck films run the gamet. The first, made in 1999 is crudely animated and looks more like a 1970's video game than a movie. However, over time the group has produced seven films and the last, Star Wreck: In The Pirkinning, was technically as slick as many professional productions, though the story - A Star Trek-like empire at war with a Babylon Five universe with lots of inside jokes- was still only something fans of these shows could really appreciate.

Iron Sky, however, is a totally original story. Not that the idea of Nazis in space hasn't popped up in science fiction before. Robert Heinlein had a Nazi base on the moon in his 1947 book Rocket Ship Galileo. The original Star Trek TV series had an episode where an Earth scientist tries to introduce the economic efficiency of the Third Reich on a new planet without creating the Nazi atrocities, but fails miserably creating a situation the only Captain Kirk can straighten out. Even Star Wars has thinly veiled space Nazis in the form of the Empire's storm troopers.

Of course, the Nazis are the villains that everybody loves to hate. No other group garnered such an abhorrent, but well-deserved reputation and had so little in the way of redeeming characteristics. Films from Raiders of the Lost Ark to The Odessa File have cast this crowd as the bad guys. How is Iron Sky different?

What Iron Sky draws from in creating its story is set of fascinating legends, mythology and conspiracy theories that have grown up over the last half century, or so about the Nazis, secret weapons and UFOs

Directed by    Timo Vuorensola

Udo Kier
Tilo Prückner
Götz Otto
Julia Dietze
Christopher Kirby

Release date    April 4, 2012

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