The Red Baron (12A)
Friday 04 September 2009
I don't know the German for "Chocks away!" but then writer-director Nikolai Müllerschö wouldn't care less if you did.
All the characters in his biopic of the First World War German flying ace spik in ze accented English, mostly in lines that crash and burn. "The notorious Red Baron, I presume?" should indicate the conversational standard. Matthias Schweighöfer is all aristocratic cheekbones and floppy fringe as the Baron von Richthofen, relishing his dominion of the skies until a feisty nurse (Lena Headey) gives him the lowdown on what the poor old infantry are going through at the front. The dogfights are competently handled, and Headey looks awfully sweet in her Boden version of 1917 mufti, but the stodgy comic-book dialogue keeps shooting plausibility down in flames.
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