Get past the off-putting title, which sounds as though it belongs to a schlocky sci-fi film. Get past the iffy Czech accents from the likes of Cillian Murphy, Jamie Dornan and Toby Jones. And get past the stodgy scene setting. Do all this and you will find this WW2 thriller about the 1942 mission to assassinate high-ranking Nazi Reinhard Heydrich in Prague genuinely stirring. The mission’s planning stages do prove a little plodding, it has to be said, but Anthropoid steps up a gear when Murphy and Dornan’s Resistance fighters finally launch their attack. The assassination’s aftermath is even more thrilling. As the SS corner the heroes in a Prague church, British writer/director Sean Ellis (Cashback, The Broken, Metro Manila) unleashes a fusillade of relentless, brutally sustained action that will leave you reeling in shock and awe.
Certificate 15. Runtime 116 mins. Director Sean Ellis
Anthropoid is released on Blu-ray & DVD on 16 January and is currently available on Digital Download, courtesy of Icon Film Distribution.
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A film critic for over 25 years, Jason admits the job can occasionally be glamorous – sitting on a film festival jury in Portugal; hanging out with Baz Luhrmann at the Chateau Marmont; chatting with Sigourney Weaver about The Archers – but he mostly spends his time in darkened rooms watching films. He’s also written theatre and opera reviews, two guide books on Rome, and competed in a race for Yachting World, whose great wheeze it was to send a seasick film critic to write about his time on the ocean waves. But Jason is happiest on dry land with a classic screwball comedy or Hitchcock thriller.