the man who killed The book and the cover
The clothes don’t make the monk, and the promo definitely doesn’t make the film. With its retro poster and bold title, The man who killed Hitler and then the Bigfoot far resembles one of those modern bisseries which offset a very meager budget with a starting postulate pushing back the boundaries of the absurd.
And advertising is anything but deceptive, and that we can guess microscopic means, the first feature film by Robert D. Krzykowski (after a remarkable short film and the co-production of the excellent The Woman) takes pleasure in taking a completely different path, thanks to a tonal singularity that catches anyone who expected a B-series cut out for tough weekends.
A snub that one guesses voluntary, as the title spoils the scenario in substance while ignoring the real interests of the film. The man who killed Hitler and then the Bigfoot tells these two events well, without making them the real heart ofa story that could ultimately be described as a drama rather than an adventure epic. The gesture itself, beyond what it implies, commands respect. Far from simply applying a program, the filmmaker took the risk of twisting the direction of his essay a little at the risk of disappointing the lover of the genre, very present in the festivals where the film has shaped its fame and forced to perpetually adapting their expectations.
The most beautiful actor in the film and Aidan Turner
Atypical, the result does not however deny its influences and its status of entertainment. He just allows himself to bypass the specifications. Stylistic tics, such as quick zooms on faces, are rare and misused. The fighting scenes are replaced by suspense scenes or even very clever dialogues (the shaving scene), when their importance does not go squarely into the background, thanks to a parallel editing that seems unnecessary in the first part before making sense in the second.
Thanks to this process, particularly well executed (we sometimes go from one era to another with a simple glance), Krzykowski operates the real sleight of hand of his work: to dwell much more on the causes and consequences of events than on the events themselves. Focus on introspection over action.
The good hunter …
In the legend
The whole thing therefore emanates an increasingly powerful fragrance of melancholy, while we realize, amazed, that the subject is more the nostalgic old grandpa than the young man with the busy life he has. summer. A very beautiful idea, which finds its culmination in the very last sequence, revealing the true state of mind of the protagonist, for whom these adventures are onlya stick in the wheels of personal achievement, even of his own humanity. A questioning against the tide of narrative standards and wonderfully well played by an extremely touching Sam Elliott.
A point of view which likes to reverse the intentions that were attributed to it before viewing, but which above all brings an even more subtle reflection on the weight of myths, true red thread of the intrigue, evoked at length in tasty dialogues. Whether it’s the beliefs of a Russian mother, the overwhelming and depressing power of fascist ideology, conspiracy theories, scratch games, or pure cinematic love, all legends are entitled to their own. moment of glory.
One of the few sublime shots that dot the film
Poor Calvin Barr has therefore had his slap in the face of these great mythologies with which he is perpetually confronted, and to which the music of Joe Kraemer and the photography – transcending with a certain genius the limits of the budget – of Alex Vendler constantly refer. The staging is regularly lost in great mystical moments, sometimes even referring to the famous patina ofApocalypse Now. Our hero, lost in these ambitious missions, looks like a sort of Indiana Jones tired of adventure. His only quest, and the one that ultimately motivates the 1h30 of footage, is a return to the simplicity of life, symbolized by the character of his brother and by many small details.
So obviously, you have to transform your gaze, accept some concessions and above all a rhythm by definition deceptive. But once you get drunk with the feeling of fatigue that emanates from the film, you can greatly benefit from its uniqueness.
The man who killed Hitler and then the Bigfoot has been available on VOD since January 4, 2021