As good, well-adjusted people living on planet Earth, there is one thing that we can never get enough of in movies, books, and video games: killing Nazis.
Sure, putting “good” and “killing” in the same sentence can seem paradoxical, but I’m an American. I live to be a paradox. It’s like having a continual inside joke with yourself, and feels great when someone else gets it while being even more hilarious when someone else doesn’t.
That’s how Nazis seem to work in fiction. They’re the supreme evil force in recent history. They’re the final product when Mumm-Ra from ThunderCats, Gargamel from The Smurfs, and Prince Lotor from Voltron are spliced together and then cloned one million times. At least, that’s how Nazis are viewed in over-the-top fiction like Frankenstein’s Army, a movie about re-animated steampunk nazi soldiers spliced together with mechanical parts. We’re going to separate Schindler’s List and Downfall for the time being.
The premise of Frankenstein’s Army is simple. A platoon of Russian soldiers are pushing their way into Germany during World War II. During their journey, they happen upon a secret Nazi laboratory which, obviously, is trying to create super-soldiers like every other secret Nazi lab mentioned, ever. These super-soldiers, however, are undead and mechanized due to the chief engineer’s study of Dr. Victor Frankenstein’s journals on regenerating mobility with undead organisms.
And so begins the closest film adaptation of the popular Wolfenstein video game series. Sure, there have been movies such as Dead Snow and Iron Sky, but these movies worked different angles of the Wolfenstein series. In Dead Snow, we have Nazi soldier zombies. It’s close to the later sequels of Wolfenstein, but let’s be honest: this movie was made to piggyback the zombie mode of Call of Duty: World at War. On the opposite end, Iron Sky was able to tap into the ridiculousness of Nazis from the moon and make use of technology that any normal Nazi would need to take on the likes of B.J. Blazkowicz.
Frankenstein’s Army looks to push this Nazi horror/science fiction further by merging the ideas of Dead Snow, Iron Sky, and Wolfenstein into a mega-movie, because using the science to explain away mechanized undead soldiers brought bake to life just makes everything a bit more plausible. Right?
At the very least, Frankenstein’s Army could serve as a good lead to check the pulse of us Nazi-monster fans for a real release of a Wolfenstein movie. Frankenstein’s Army has just enough of the video game in its plot-line and monsters to prep us, if not jut giving us a homage.
The parallel couldn’t be more apparent if Heinrich Himmler was the mad scientist organizing the SS Paranormal Division. Who knows, maybe he is.
The only problems we are sure to run into are:
1) No B.J. Blazkowicz super-badass soldier destroying anything wearing a swastika.
Frankenstein’s Army is, seriously, a period piece, so we will instead see Russian soldiers from World War II fighting for their lives instead an all-American Polish hero. Not quite as exciting.
2) No robo-Hitler.
For decades we have been waiting for the giant, Mecha-Hitler from Wolfenstein to grace the screen, and it looks like we will be waiting a bit longer. It is a period piece, which means that Hitler is probably still alive and erratic back in Berlin at the time of this movie. At best, we can expect to see a giant, mechanized super-Nazi monster with a blonde wig on. Here’s hoping.
Frankenstein’s Army should be, at the very least, entertaining, but don’t go in expecting a slow-burn suspenseful horror movie. This is going to be balls out, mad scientist, tongue-in-cheek insanity. If you go in expecting this, you shouldn’t be disappointed. I hope I’m not.