Hello Everyone, Janet W. here…
This is for all you conspiracy nuts out there. The trio of Matt Johnson, Owen Williams, and Josh Boles brings you a big historical “What if?” Did Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins really land on the moon? Operation Avalanche (still don’t understand the code name) presents an almost convincing counter to the history books.
In 1965, the United States of America has embarked on a race to the moon with the Soviet Union. The CIA learns that a Russian mole is leaking NASA secrets back home to Mother Russia. Around the same time, the CIA recruits Harvard and Yale’s brightest, although you wouldn’t know it as you continue to watch.
Johnson, Williams, and Boles are unknowns to me. Actually, the whole cast is unknown. Performances were believable, but the dialogue ruined the authenticity of the period. The costume design and mixed media of old press videos of President John F. Kennedy, Sputnik, Stanley Kubrick, and Georges Méliès’ A Trip to the Moon made for quite the interesting documentary within a documentary story. Very cool usage and explanation of front projection effect. The cinematography was pretty decent (grainy image, noticeable flicker, floaters, etc.), but the unsteady cams were excessively used. Once the premise of it being a documentary was established, the swirling quick pans and rapid descending tilts points of view were no longer necessary and annoying. Also, I’m not sure if it was the theater or the production, but the sound was jacked WAY TOO HIGH. Ears were hurting from pistols firing, glass shattering, and the soundtrack.
Overall, Operation Avalanche was a quirky little movie. Some portions were enjoyable, but the majority was boring. Around the middle of the film were a solid string of laughs. Operation Avalanche may be classified as a thriller, but it’s too stupid and at times funny that it felt more like a mockumentary/comedy.
THRILLER NOT THRILLING
Janet L. White
Your friendly straightforward neighborhood critic