What does the future hold? The film leaves a small handful of unanswered questions. What will become of Baal's host? Will he be able to come to terms with what has happened to him, or as a clone is he doomed without a symbiote or sarcophagus to sustain him? And what of Mitchell? What secrets does he hold, and how has his interference in the past manipulated things in our future? ... Is Jack's pond once again without fish?
We cannot recommend Stargate: Continuum highly enough for both Stargate fans and sci-fi movie buffs. Those who are unfamiliar with SG-1's back-story may miss some details, but the story is certainly told in such a way that it is accessible and easy to figure out what is going on (which could not be said for The Ark of Truth). It's wildly entertaining, with a fun time travel story and visuals that are better than anything you'll find in a $7 million, direct-to-DVD release.
Samantha Carter has the chance to set things right with the discovery of Baal's time machine on the planet Praxyon.
How does Stargate: Continuum compare to the television series? Clearly, it's bigger -- a bigger budget and a movie structure allow the team to tell a very "Stargate" story in a fresh and compelling way. In terms of story, characters, music, and effects, it's everything you love about Stargate taken to the Nth degree.
This is not a "Moebius" redux, though Wright admits that the SG-1 eighth season finale did step on the altered timeline idea a bit. The fact that three members of SG-1 are protected from the change, however (not to mention that Continuum has nothing to do with ancient Egypt, Chulak, or nerdy alternate versions of our heroes), makes it progress as a completely different story. Fans should not be too eager to spot similarities such as "time travel" or "alternate reality" (which are staples of the science fiction genre) and call the story rehashed.
How does this film compare to its predecessor? Stargate: The Ark of Truth, had to perform a very specific function in tying up the loose ends from the TV series' main story arc. Continuum is a better movie, because it is unencumbered by that duty (though it does end up resolving Baal's story) -- but also because it has that rather undefinable "spark" which characterizes the best SG-1 episodes. Maybe it's what an actor like Richard Dean Anderson brings to the screen; maybe it's because everyone brought their A-game to the movie-level project. Or maybe it's just magic, the sort of project where all the elements of story and production come together just right.
Whatever it is, Continuum is Stargate at its very best. If this is what an on-going series of Stargate movies look like, fans are in for a terrific ride. Combine one of Stargate's best with an excellent audio commentary and a handful of great bonus features, and sci-fi fans have no reason not to go buy two.
BONUS FEATURES: B
OVERALL PACKAGE: A-
Russian Migs engage a squad of Goa'uld Death Gliders in one of the movie's most spectacular visual effects shots.
Release Date: July 29, 2008 (Region 1 - North America); August 18, 2008 (Region 2 - United Kingdom); August 6, 2008 (Region 4 - Australia)
Suggested Retail Price (DVD): $26.98 U.S. / $37.98 Canada / £19.99 U.K.
Suggested Retail Price (Blu-ray): $39.98 U.S. / $49.98 Canada / £28.99 U.K.
Movie Run Time: 99 minutes
MPAA Rating: Not Rated
Aspect Ratio: Widescreen 1.78:1 enhanced
Audio: Dolby Digital 5.1 surround
Languages: English, French, Spanish
Subtitles: English, French, Spanish
Blu-ray Authoring: BD-Java with AVC (MPEG 4 compression) on a single-layer 25 GB disc with English 5.1 DTS HD Lossless Master Audio, plus French 5.1 Dolby Digital and Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital subtitles
Bonus Features: Commentary with Brad Wright and Martin Wood; "The Making of Stargate: Continuum," "Stargate Goes To the Arctic," "The Layman's Guide to Time Travel;" Trailers
Trailers (Auto-play): "War Games: The Dead Code," "Stargate Atlantis: Season Four," "Stargate SG-1: Seasons 1-10," "Joy Ride 2: Dead Ahead"
Trailers (Menu): "Stargate: The Ark of Truth," "Fantastic Four: Season 1," "Stargate Worlds," "X-Files"
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