Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Stargate (1994) Review:

It is amazing how similar films can be when it comes to plot, predictability, and story line. I liked the direction Roland Emmerich put into the film and screenplay but it felt like there were some areas that were not carefully scanned over thoroughly. There were several things I enjoyed during the running time of Stargate, but there were some drawbacks that should have been addressed at the same time.

Kurt Russell as the troubled
Jack O'Neil
Stargate is the story of linguist Dr. Daniel Jackson (James Spader) who is on the verge of finding the truth behind the great pyramids of Egypt. Of course, no one believes him, until he is given a special offer that will allow him to prove his theory. Hmmmm....already, from there it sounds like the story of Milo James Thatch from Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001). Accompanying Dr. Jackson is Colonel Jack O'Neil played by veteran actor Kurt Russell. At first O'Neil is one of those silent characters who is difficult to communicate with but he opens up later on. Thankfully, Russell doesn't play stone-faced the whole time like Todd from Soldier (1998).

Along with these two actors, the rest of the acting is presentable. The special effects are average. Nothings amazing nor does it seem really cheap looking so there's nothing to critique there. Looking back on them, they were standard for their time. As the plot continues, Jackson’s' group of followers run into distant humans in a far away galaxy. It is there that Spader's character falls in love with the leader's daughter, Sha'uri (Mili Avital), who I will say, looks great. I did like the love story but it left me wanting to see more that it showed.

James Spader & MiliAvital
Again this specific plot device runs practically parallel to that of Disney's Atlantis. The difference is that Disney's was more entertaining and with characters that had more personality to them. Sure, Spader played a great nerd and Russell was good as depressed individual (at first), but having a boatload of characters with different accents is much more fun to listen and watch on screen. I also liked the themes that were played in David Arnold's soundtrack. It may not have had sci-fi feel to it, but it did have a memorable tune. In some ways, it bordered on the edge of John Williams but obviously not as epic sounding.

Stargate is the film that pushed director Roland Emmerich to the pinnacle of success but the characters within the story lack heart. However, it is supported by a good music and acting.

Points Earned --> 7:10

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