Paradox Soldiers

Paradox Soldiers
The Russians know a thing or two about making movies: classics such as Eisenstein's BATTLESHIP POTEMKIN and Tarkovsky's SOLARIS immediately spring to mind, but contemporary filmmakers such as Timur Bekmambetov (DAY WATCH/NIGHT WATCH, WANTED) have help re-establish the country's international reputation, particularly in genre films. Of course, like the cinema of every country, there is plenty of dross amongst the brilliance or, as is more often the case, there are some gems amongst all the dross. Some films manage to traverse boundaries and address universal themes whilst retaining a national identity, others are clearly aimed at a domestic market and don't always travel. PARADOX SOLDIERS falls somewhere between those camps.

The film crosses two genres: war and sci-fi/time travel as two pairs of friends from different regions of the old Soviet Union, meet at a WWII re-enactment and the ingrained enmity immediately puts them in conflict. After a bizarre incident involving an unexploded bomb, all four are transported back to crucial battle for Russia during WWII. Of course, one of the party just happens to be an expert on the period as he is studying it at university. In fact, all the characters are more stereotypical than archetypal and their story path predictable from the outset, with the time travel serving only as a plot device that doesn't live up to the expectations of the title. It's possible that some of the film's impact has been lost in translation through an outsider's lack of knowledge of the geopolitical history the film is supposed to be covering, but this should not matter in a movie with good characters and story.

On the plus side it is a technically proficient film with some great production values and special effects in the battle scenes, but a film does need more than that for it to be a success. Overall it is marginally better than a lot of US straight-to-video releases, especially as it does take itself a little too seriously despite several attempts at humour. And, as with many cross genre films, it ends up alienating both types of audience.

If you are one of the few people who look at the special features on DVDs, you won't find any here except for a few trailers.

PARADOX SOLDIERS is out on DVD now from Metrodome and is available from Play and all good retailers.

We have three copies of the film to give away on DVD. Click on the link below to enter the competition.

This competiton has ended

Around the web