1987. World War II veteran Calvin Barr spends his evenings at the neighborhood bar, obsessed with memories of the war and from the guilt for killing a man.
The one who fell by his hand was not just any man but even the ruthless dictator Adolf Hitler: the story is in fact not what they have always told us, but the figure of the Fuhrer survived until his official death through the use of identical double in all respects.
Precisely because of the extraordinary skills demonstrated in his youth, even though he is now elderly and with several ailments, he is contacted by the FBI to put an end to a threat that could cause an epidemic on a global scale. The legendary Bigfoot is in fact seriously ill and has become the so-called patient zero of a pandemic that has already led to the extinction of dozens of animal species living in the forest its hunting territory, renamed as Dead Zone.
After an initial refusal, Calvin decides to accept the dangerous assignment, despite his age and his promise to never kill anyone again.
The movie you don’t expect
The title undoubtedly suggests one of those typical b / z movies so widespread in recent years, with the association between the Nazi dictator and the mythical creature with a humanoid shape that are united by the figure of the protagonist. In reality The Man Who Killed Hitler and Then Bigfoot is a multi-layered film, not always homogeneous but full of ideas and tinged with a certain melancholy, such as to make the main figure human and easily lovable.
I deserve this largely of Sam Elliott, ideal choice to bring this character out of time and space to life, which really seems to come from another era. The iconic mustache of the American actor, the symbolic face of the western and of many more or less independent cults, and his distressed but full of determination gaze go hand in hand with a still enviable physical form and – despite the use of stunts in some sequences – you can see the sweat and fatigue on his face.
In particular in thelast half hour, where the actual monster hunt takes place – represented here, also for script reasons, in a completely new iconography – the action takes on a prominent place, between chases through endless forests and climbing steep mountains.
Between past and present
For much of the viewing the story alternates between the filmic present and the numerous flashbacks showing us Calvin’s youth – interpreted in these phases by Aidan Turner – giving us a comprehensive look at both the private sector and the war actions undertaken by them to try to put an end to the Nazi madness.
Particular attention is paid to the relationship with the younger brother, present in both timelines, and above all to the missed love with the beautiful Maxine, one of the many regrets that still haunt the heart of the old protagonist.
The director and screenwriter Robert D. Krzykowski is making his absolute debut behind the camera and even without giving virtuosity or peculiar aesthetic choices (the simple and clean style is well suited to the operation) it manages to combine different tones and atmospheres with a pleasant smoothness.
For ninety minutes The man who killed Hitler and then the Bigfoot – also available in the Amazon Prime Video catalog – it does its job worthily, entertaining between nostalgia and action on a more paradoxical basis than usual.