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HTF Blu Ray Review: Stargate: Continuum (Blu-ray)


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#1 of 5 OFFLINE   Todd Erwin

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Posted August 19 2008 - 07:29 AM

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Studio: MGM Home Entertainment
Year: 2008
Rated: Not Rated
Film Length: 98 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 1.78:1
Audio: DTS HD-MA 5.1 (English), Dolby Digital 5.1 (Spanish, French)
Subtitles: English (SDH), Spanish


US DVD Release Date: July 29, 2008


Movie: 3.5 out of 5

Stargate: Continuum is the second Direct To DVD movie based on the successful cable television series Stargate: SG-1 (itself a spin-off from the theatrical feature Stargate). Ba’al (Cliff Simon), the last of the G’ould System Lords, travels back in time to stop the Stargate from being discovered/ The SG-1 team return from a mission to find an altered timeline, and must convince the current government leaders that the Stargate exists and need to find it to correct the timeline and save Earth from being enslaved by the G’ould.

As a fan of the series, it was nice to see Richard Dean Anderson return as Jack O’Neill, who left the series after season eight. Continuum has a fun and exciting first and third act, but gets bogged down in politics and government cover-up during the second act, almost bringing the film to a screeching halt.


Video: 3.5 out of 5

Stargate: Continuum comes to Blu-ray in an above average 1080p AVC transfer. Filmed mostly with Panavision HD cameras, director of photography Peter Woeste gives Continuum a nice cinematic feel, with decent blacks and adequate detail. There is some persistent grain visible, perhaps added during post production to better simulate film.


Audio: 4 out of 5

The DTS-HD Master Audio soundtrack is a definite cut above what was heard on the series. The big highlight is the bombastic score by Joel Goldsmith (son of Jerry Goldsmith - bombastic seems to run in the family), recorded with a full orchestra. The action sequences have a lot of punch as well, with good LFE response and very active surrounds. The rest of the film is front-heavy, particularly during the slower second act.


Special Features: 3 out of 5

The highlight of the special features is an engaging commentary track by executive producer and writer Brad Wright and director Martin Wood. They discuss how the script evolved, what shooting in the arctic was like, and share insight on how the film was made.

Three featurettes are also provided, all are in MPEG-2 standard definition.

The Making of Stargate: Continuum (23 minutes) is a fairly run of the mill documentary with the cast and crew, discussing how much fun the film was to make and to work with everyone from the series again.

Stargate Goes To The Arctic (22 minutes) is just what the title implies, a documentary on shooting scenes in the arctic. As a film maker, I found this featurette to be very interesting. The cast and crew discuss how they filmed in sub-zero temperatures and the effects on the cast and crew, as well as the equipment. For example, due to the extreme weather, the arctic scenes were shot with 16mm cameras, rather than HD.

The Layman’s Guide To Time Travel (9 minutes) has astrophysicist Jaymie Matthews presenting various theories on time travel.

Also included are trailers for Fox titles Street Kings, The Happening, and Behind Enemy Lines 3. All are presented in 1080p.


Overall: 3.5 out of 5 (non an average)

This is a must-have for any fan of Stargate: SG-1. However, the uninitiated may get lost in the storyline, so a primer of at least seasons 7 through 10 of Stargate: SG-1, and possibly Stargate: The Ark of Truth are highly recommended before renting Continuum.


This DVD was reviewed on the following home theater gear:
Toshiba 56HM66 DLP HDTV
Sony Playstation 3
Yamaha HTR-5940 Home Theater Receiver (in 5.1 configuration)
Yamaha NS-AP2600 Home Cinema Speaker Package
Yamaha YST-SW010 subwoofer


#2 of 5 OFFLINE   Arild

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Posted August 20 2008 - 09:12 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toddwrtr
Filmed mostly with Panavision HD cameras,
Hrm... sure about this? I know the last few seasons of the TV show were shot that way, but I was under the impression that they went back to 35mm for the two movies...?

#3 of 5 OFFLINE   Todd Erwin

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Posted August 20 2008 - 01:39 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Arild
Hrm... sure about this? I know the last few seasons of the TV show were shot that way, but I was under the impression that they went back to 35mm for the two movies...?

The end credits indicate "Panavision Canada, Advanced Digital Imaging."

#4 of 5 OFFLINE   troy evans

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Posted August 20 2008 - 02:24 PM

Here's a link about the filming: Stargate News They did use Panavision digital cameras. The only exception is the shots in the artic, which were done on 16mm.
" I think it's time we go to plan B". "What's plan B?" "That's the one where we don't do something stupid".

#5 of 5 OFFLINE   Arild

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Posted August 21 2008 - 03:26 AM

Strange. I remember clearly the producers talking about how they went back to 35mm for the movies. Maybe it was only the case for "Ark of Truth"?