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Review: Kommando 1944

July 1944, An Asian American soldier Corporal Soo is thrown into a Nazi work camp on a farm in Germany as his family back home in America are forced into an American Japanese concentration camp in Manzanar California. The allied soldiers think Soo is a Japanese soldier and segregate him. Soo must fight to let go of the past in order to be set free. This fantastic short film by Derek Quick has already won multiple awards worldwide, including Best Drama Short Film at the Los Angeles Film Awards , Best Picture at Festigious International Film Festival and Film of the Month at Top Shorts. In September 2018, it also won big at the Actors Awards: Best Performance of Fest (John Manahan), Best Supporting Actor (Bejo Dohmen), Best Actor in an Indie Film (Daniel Joo) and Best Ensemble.  In less than 15 minutes, we get to know each and every character in “Kommando 1944”- who they are, what they want and how they feel. This is a very big challenge for any director and his cast, and can only happen when your actors are committed and believe in the story and its message. An incredible team effort by a super talented cast, led by an extraordinary director.

John Manahan as Hoffman

John Manahan plays Hoffman, the only decent Nazi in the work camp on a farm in Germany. He communicates with Corporal Soo (played by the fantastic Daniel Joo), an Asian American soldier who is thrown into the camp, and tries to help him while risking his own life. I could feel his inner conflicts from the very first scene (when he meets Kaiser the Lead Nazi SS Soldier). Hoffman’s bravery and humanity made him an unforgettable character in this fine short drama. An inspiring performance.

Bejo Dohmen as Kaiser

Bejo Dohmen plays Kaiser, the evil Lead Nazi SS Soldier. Kaiser shows no mercy or respect to anyone, and would cut a traitor’s throat without blinking. The look in his eyes, the way he walks and talks, felt like the real thing - a terrifying man who is too evil to be called ‘a human being’.  An outstanding performance by a talented actor.

Daniel Joo as Soo

Daniel Joo plays the protagonist role of Soo, the Asian American soldier. Joo's performance is simply mesmerizing. With only one line in the entire film, Joo carries us the entire way, and speaks to the audience every moment using minimalistic expressions and tons of sensitivity.  "We plan to break the Guinness World Record for wins by a short film" - read this interview with Derek Quick Kommando 1944 - website: Instagram:


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