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Tuesday, July 14, 2020

GHOSTS OF WAR (Film Review)

                                   Starring: Brenton Thwaites, Theo Rossi, Kyle Gallner

                                                      Directed by: Eric Bress


  With the long-standing premise of war/horror having been used as a tool to frighten and otherwise entertain somewhat fickle movie fans, Director Eric Bress' latest endeavor, Ghosts Of War is one of those displays that should give viewers 90 minutes of moderately creepy amusement.

 I'll admit upon my first inspection I was a bit worried about the thought of undead Nazi soldiers returning from the grave to wreak havoc and vow revenge upon the American forces that put them down - not the case at all here. This presentation is a bit more fleshed out, and our eyes are first set upon young G.I. Chris (Thwaites), who along with his small band of fellow troops (Rossi, Gallner, Skyler Astin & Alan Ritchson) are on their way to hole up in a luxurious French chateau until things in this crazy WWII start to cool off a bit. From their arrival, it's clear that the outgoing troops are clearly spooked and are more than happy to hit the road running and leave this stronghold in the hands of fresh grunts. This hardnosed quintet of sadistic soldiers will be in much more than a fight against a living enemy - these blood & dirt-covered defenders have some demons to exorcise before they're dragged down to a fate worse than death itself.

  Blending equal parts of war action and some less-than-enthusiastic horror imagery, the film stumbles precipitously in its latter stages, and without some strong performances, the movie would be completely lost. Thwaites, Rossi (best known as Juice from "Sons Of Anarchy") and Mr. Billy Zane himself in an interesting role, all provide the necessary oxygen one needs to intake to make it past all the smoke and ethereal emissions this one leaves behind. Bress's direction not only focuses on the chills and thrills of a standard haunted house movie but incorporates the ACTUAL horrors of war that at times easily outdistance their running partner by a long stretch of fractured asphalt. The film's final stages are a complete mind-melt and swerve the viewers away from the platform in which they were once watching - it's a decent tactic and served the story well. Overall, I'd recommend Ghosts Of War as a solid one-timer for those who prefer a little vengeful ghost-story in with their blood & guts combat presentation. The film will be available in both On-Demand and digital formats on July 17th.

FILM RATING: 3 out of 5

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