Army of Thieves, the prequel to Zack Snyder’s Army of the Dead, debuted last weekend on Netflix. Matthias Schweighöfer returns to direct and star in this heist comedy plus zombie film.
Should you skip it or watch it? Read on this review to find out.
Army of the Dead Prequel
The well-received Army of the Dead from Zack Snyder gets a spinoff featuring one of its beloved characters, Dieter. The master safecracker played by Matthias Schweighöfer gets a second shot at the big screen with his own feature, Army of Thieves.
Set before the events of Army of the Dead, we find Dieter then known as Sebastian Schlencht-Wöhnert being recruited by Game of Thrones star Nathalie Emmanuel in a series of heists involving three safes created by legendary locksmith Hans Wagner. There aren’t a lot of zombies on Army of Thieves yet. But events from Army of the Dead are mentioned in passing with Vegas being the only place overwhelmed with the undead as the film happens.
Appealing and Delightful
Zack Snyder restored hope for the dying zombie franchise (pun intended) with Army of the Dead by making the genre cool again. Army of Thieves, on the other hand, looks to revive the heist genre by mixing it up with comedy and romance. The movie feels kind of like The Italian Job but with a sillier but delightful approach.
Army of Thieves is somewhat more appealing though with just the right amount of romance and not exactly weighty storylines. This formula seems to work so much that you might even find yourself grinning mostly throughout the movie. And that says a lot about the film. Entertainment is what we are all here, after all.
Matthias Schweighöfer is a Revelation
It was a step in the right direction to bring back one of Army of the Dead’s more entertaining characters in Dieter. Army of Thieves gives the character its due by linking him to his own story.
Director and actor Matthias Schweighöfer shines on this one. The story of the transformation of Sebastian to Dieter indeed merits his own standalone film.
As director, Schweighöfer lets us see some refreshing and intriguing visuals. Gone were Zack Snyder’s trademark slow-motions and that’s fine. Those were not necessary in this film. Schweighöfer makes this film his own. Fresh, appealing, and absolutely delightful.
As a star, Schweighöfer is just as good. His oozing charm is through the roof. Coupled with Nathalie Emmanuel, their on-screen chemistry is invigorating.
Now, as both director and star? Matthias Schweighöfer is a Revelation!
Skip or Watch?
German Director-Star Matthias Schweighöfer proves he’s right up there with some of the best directors in the business. Fueled by some fresh direction and charming performances from its cast, Army of Thieves stands apart from the main feature Army of the Dead.
That said, Army of Thieves should be on your watch list.
Here is salida|etc’s rating for Army of Thieves.
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