Jackboots on Whitehall
Jackboots on Whitehall (a.k.a. Nazi Invasion: Team Europe) is a 2010 British puppet adult animated satirical action comedy film set in an alternative history Second World War, in which Nazi Germany has seized London. The British must band together at Hadrian's Wall if they are to thwart the German invasion. Conceived by Edward and Rory McHenry, it is the first of its kind to feature animatronic puppets and the voices of well-known British actors including Ewan McGregor, Rosamund Pike, Richard E. Grant, Timothy Spall, Richard O'Brien and Richard Griffiths. The film was executive produced by Frank Mannion.
|Jackboots on Whitehall|
UK theatrical release poster
|Directed by||The McHenry Brothers|
|Written by||The McHenry Brothers|
|Story by||The McHenry Brothers|
|Music by||Guy Michelmore|
|Edited by||Chris Blunden|
|Distributed by||Vertigo Films|
The film premiered at the Edinburgh International Film Festival on 20 June 2010 and was theatrically released in the United Kingdom on 8 October 2010 by Vertigo Films. It received mixed reviews from critics, praising the cast, set design and voice acting but negativity is geared towards the puppetry, action scenes, humor and story, calling it "lifeless, stiff, boring and unfunny."
In 1940, Nazi Germany invades Great Britain by drilling under the English Channel and up through the cobblestones on Whitehall. In London, from his bunker under Downing Street, Prime Minister Winston Churchill issues a call to arms for all of Britain to band together to resist the invaders. In a small village Chris, a young everyman, rallies the residents to fight back. Joining forces with Churchill's small group of soldiers, the resistance movement retreats to Hadrian's Wall where the unlikely saviours of the country come from the Scottish highlands.
As appearing in Jackboots on Whitehall, (main speaking roles and screen credits identified):
- Ewan McGregor as Chris
- Rosamund Pike as Daisy
- Richard E. Grant as The Vicar
- Timothy Spall as Winston Churchill
- Tom Wilkinson as Albert and Joseph Goebbels
- Dominic West as Billy Fiske
- Alan Cumming as Adolf Hitler and Braveheart
- Sanjeev Bhaskar as Major Rupee
- Richard Griffiths as Hermann Göring
- Richard O'Brien as Heinrich Himmler
- Stephen Merchant as Tom
- Pam Ferris as Matron Rutty
- Hugh Fraser as Gaston and the Newsreader
- Tobias Menzies as Captain English and Bernard Montgomery
- Martyn Ellis as Zeppelin Captain
- Alexander Armstrong as Red Leader
- Rory McHenry
- Caroline Duff
- Charlotte Moore
- James Hicks
- Brian Conley
- Jimmy Boyle
- Edward McHenry
- Benedick Blythe
- Stephen Lord
- Jonathan Barlow
- Jana Agnew
- Karl Richards
- Mark Taylor
- Neil Newbon
In using real-life characters to embody a more accurate portrayal, some characters are easily recognizable. While Battle of Britain hero and American pilot Billy Fiske appears, he embodies the characteristics of screen legend Clark Gable. Spall had previously portrayed Churchill in The King's Speech (2010).
Writer-directors Edward and Rory McHenry poured an enormous amount of effort into the animatronic creations and models, known as "supermarionation" that featured accurately rendered period uniforms, architecture and military equipment. Some continuity errors creeped in. During the first battle between the elite Punjabi Guards and the Germans, a Punjabi soldier is seen using a PIAT rocket launcher, but the PIAT was introduced in 1943 while the film is set in 1940. Also, Jackboots on Whitehall features the German airship Hindenburg which was destroyed in 1937. A German tank destroys the Cenotaph to gain access to Downing Street, but the Cenotaph is not located at the junction of Downing Street and Whitehall, it is further down the street. One prominent scene has a crane shot at the village fête, where a direction sign with two arrows is labeled "Upper Trollope" and "Lower Trollope", apparently as a tribute to Victorian novelist Anthony Trollope. With a focus on the actual period of the Battle of Britain, the following aircraft models were essential to the depiction of the alternative history: Fairey Fulmar MkI, Focke-Wulf Fw 190D, Hawker Hurricane, Junkers Ju 88A, Junkers Ju 87B-2 Stuka, Messerschmitt Bf 109E and Supermarine Spitfire I. In addition, the following models were also featured: Douglas DC-3, Ford 4-AT-A Trimotor, Sopwith F.1 Camel and Zeppelin LZ 129 Hindenburg.
Theatrical release and premiereEdit
Robbie Collin, of the News Of The World, gave the film 4 stars summarising it as "Stupid, throwaway nonsense - and that's the whole idea".Total Film Magazine also gave the film 4 stars stating "Jackboots wittily merges war flick iconography, Inglorious revisionism and Team America silliness to create a hilarious, endearing one-off". While The Guardian praised the "impressive all-star vocal cast" in Jackboots on Whitehall, and called it a "labour of love" by its writer-directors, concluded it was "amiably intentioned but desperately weak in terms of script" comparing it unfavourably with Wallace and Gromit and Team America: World Police. Other reviews were of a similar nature; the review in The Telegraph characterized the film as "an enterprising comedy but ultimately a boorish overkill." it currently has a 44% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
The film grossed $20,776 worldwide.
Jackboots on Whitehall was released on DVD and Blu-ray on 26 July 2011 by Sony Pictures Home Entertainment.
|British Independent Film Awards 2010||Raindance Award||Nominated|
|Jackboots on Whitehall|
|Soundtrack album by|
|Released||10 August 2010|
All music was composed by Guy Michelmore.
- Battle Of Britain
- Harvest And Village
- Nazi Airship Attack
- Punjabi's Last Stand
- Light The Beacons
- Last Of The Few
- Retreat To Scotland
- Battle Of Downing Street
- Chris To The Rescue
- Nazis In London
- Travelling North
- Punjabi's Escape From London
- Hadrian's Wall
- Aurora Borealis
- Where Is Herr Churchill?
- The Morning After
- A Highland Morning
- Chris' Mission
- Facing The Enemy
- Jerusalem - Performed by Rosamund Pike, Tom Wilkinson, Stephen Merchant, Sanjeev Bhaskar, Pam Ferris and Cast
- Defending The Wall
- The Battle
- Facing Defeat
- Scottish Attack
- You're A Scotsman
- The Fallen
- Rule Britannia
- Scots Revenge
- Whitehall March
- Scotland The Brave
- Jackboots Demo
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- Vertigo Films production notes
- "Credits:Jackboots on Whitehall." The New York Times. Retrieved: 23 June 2012.
- Etier, Bob. "Barbie vs. Hitler: Jackboots on Whitehall (2010)." Archived 26 February 2014 at the Wayback Machine technorati.com, 3 31 August 2011. Retrieved: 20 October 2012.
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- Bradshaw, Peter. "Review: Jackboots on Whitehall." The Guardian, 7 October 2010. Retrieved: 23 June 2012.
- Bennett, Ray (20 June 2010). "Jackboots on Whitehall -- Film Review". Hollywood Reporter.
with Grant a standout as the foul-mouthed vicar.
- Collin, Robbie. "Jackboots On Whitehall (12A)." News of the World, 3 October 2010.
- Smith, Neil. "Jackboots On Whitehall." Total Film, 11 October 2010. Retrieved: 23 June 2012.
- Gant, Charles (24 June 2010). "Review: 'Jackboots on Whitehall'". variety.com. Retrieved 24 October 2016.
- Robey, Tim. "Jackboots on Whitehall, review By Tim." The Telegraph, 7 October 2010. Retrieved: 23 June 2012.