By Daniel Walber | Spout May 2, 2011 at 4:15AM
This short film opens with a fart joke. It’s not really even a joke so much as an enormous fart noise and a reaction shot, which set things off to an abrupt and jarring start. While beginning with this sort of sophomoric humor isn’t exactly a good sign, the rest of the short more than makes up for it. “Ollie Klublershturf vs. the Nazis” is a hilarious and eccentric piece of time travel comedy that is not just conscious of its own absurdity, but runs with it. Written by Damon Lindelof (of “Lost” fame), it stars a small cast with great comic timing and chemistry, including a clean-cut Chris Hemsworth as a Nazi in disguise.
After that extraordinary flatulence kicks things off, the film begins as a “Meet the Parents” type comedy. Dade Klublershturf (Samm Levine) has brought home his German girlfriend, Daniella (Rachel Nichols), to meet his somewhat oblivious parents, played by the always entertaining Lainie Kazan and George Segal. Yet things shift pretty quickly once the young and brilliant Ollie Klublershturf (Zach Mills) comes onto the scene. He’s been building a time machine upstairs, which is wanted desperately by a vindictive group of Nazis. Daniella is one of these, having infiltrated the family through the naïve Dade. She’s joined by two gentlemen who arrive at the door posing as All-American Bible salesmen: Hemsworth and a bespectacled Norman Reedus, of all people.
This weekend’s impending Norse god of thunder somehow makes a perfect faux-Nazi. Maybe it’s his bulk, muscles on which mom Sharon Klublershturf makes sure to both squeeze and compliment. It’s also not a bit ironic to see him just a year before “Thor” playing an equally hyper-Aryan hulking blond. Yet here, fighting off the young Ollie, he’s a bit less competent than a superhero should be and we can assume that his Nazi values are somewhat different from the morality of a caped crusader. Also, he seems to be quite good at comedy, which is a good sign that as the thunder god he’ll be able to carry the film with more than just his biceps.
Not that Hemsworth is the only funny thing about “Ollie Klubershturf vs. the Nazis.” The rest of the cast is hilarious as well and their dinner table banter is exactly what one would hope for in this sort of absurd sci-fi fantasy. There’s a wonderful embrace of the ridiculous camp factor inherent in making a movie about a boy genius fighting off the advent of a Fourth Reich with an Atari joystick. Daniella’s German accent is about as over the top as possible, Ollie maintains a delightfully silly rendition of calmly defiant boredom, and the Klublershrturfs and their fascist guests keep up a wonderfully silly atmosphere. It all moves quite quickly, everything from the actors’ joke delivery to the cross-cutting is perfectly timed, and the ten minutes fly by. Take a look: