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Stargate: Continuum [DVD]
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Sci-fi adventure set featuring the SG-1 crew. The film begins with SG-1 attending the execution of Ba'al (Cliff Simon), the final Goa'uld System Lord. When Teal'c (Christopher Judge) and Vala (Claudia Black) suddenly disappear into thin air, Carter (Amanda Tapping), Daniel (Michael Shanks) and Mitchell (Ben Browder) travel back to Earth to discover that history has been altered, and, in this new timeline, the Stargate programme has never been discovered. When they try to convince the military that the timeline has been altered and that Ba'al is responsible, hundreds of Goa'uld ships suddenly arrive in orbit, led by Ba'al, his queen, Qetesh (Vala), and his first prime, Teal'c. It's now up to O'Neill (Richard Dean Anderson) and the rest of the crew to find the Stargate and set things right before the Goa'uld take over the world.
A feature-length adventure that bases itself around the universe of Stargate SG-1, Continuum makes the most of the increased budget clearly available, and serves up a hugely enjoyable, action-packed slice of science-fiction that makes you wish theyd all hurry up and make the next instalment.
Stargate: Continuum follows on from the earlier feature-length The Ark Of Truth, and it focuses on a staple storyline of science fiction television, the alternate timeline. In this instance, its an Earth where the Stargate simply hasnt been discovered, and nobody has any knowledge of the crews adventures.
Wisely using this story mechanic as a basis rather than the main thrust of Stargate: Continuum, the action soon focuses on a well-realised attempt by the Baal to conquer Earth. Its exciting stuff, and while the credits arguably roll a little too early, its very welcome work from the SG-1 favourites that builds up to a strong outing for all concerned. And in the midst of them is the returning Richard Dean Anderson as ONeill, and very welcome he is too.
Stargate: Continuum makes good use of both the extended running time that a feature offers, as well as the extra resources that were clearly available in front of and behind the camera. Its inevitably going to be enjoyed most of all by SG-1s fanbase, but theres plenty in here too for the casual science-fiction enthusiast. --Jon Foster
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`Continuum' is a great fun film that is very enjoyable and is a great ending to the Stargate series. The film could have probably used a bit more in the way of time in order to get the best out of the storyline but it nonetheless gives a good account of itself in the one and a half hours that it got. The acting and the script are on a par with the series proper but I must say that I did like Claudia Black's performances as her Goa'uld persona Quetesh and Cliff Simon as Ba'al is always enjoyable. There where a few small niggles with the special effects in places but otherwise they were on a par with those seen in the series.
Overall, despite a couple of problems, `Continuum' proved to be a great film that is a must see for any Stargate fan.
Oh, and if you're a parent worried about what the reviewer concerned about the "swearing" said, then I'd be more concerned with the couple of scenes involving a very sharp sword than a couple of uses of the "s-word". If you're that concerned, buy them Stargate Infinity - Vol 1 instead.
Fortunately the Goa'uld plot threads are more or less tied up in "Stargate: Continuum," the second of the two Stargate direct-to-DVD movies. This movie is a bit of a mind-bender (especially with all the time-skipping and temporal wrinkles) but it brings back all the favorite characters (and some dead ones) and finishes the story off in true Stargate style.
SG-1 and General Jack O'Neill (Richard Dean Anderson) are watching the execution and extraction of Ba'al... but unfortunately, it's not the real Ba'al. The real Ba'al has time-traveled and altered the timeline, causing Teal'c (Christopher Judge), Vala (Claudia Black) and the Tok'ra to vanish, and resulting in Jack's death.
Unfortunately, this alternate timeline becomes more perilous after a year -- Earth is being threatened by the supreme System Lord Ba'al, his queen Qetesh (in Vala's body) and his First Prime Teal'c. But when Qetesh and Ba'al clash over his past on Earth, the altered SG-1 must band together to find and destroy Ba'al's time machine, and somehow restore the timeline to what it once was. Or to something resembling it.
"Stargate: The Ark of Truth" and "Stargate: Continuum" are basically intended to wrap up loose ends, and as a standalone story "Stargate Continuum" is not quite as satisfying as the television show was. And frankly, "Continuum" may need multiple viewings to keep up with the time-bouncing plotline -- it scrambled my brain on the first time.
But as a finale, it serves the Goa'uld storyline well -- lots of action, space battles, "snakeheads," and a way bigger budget that a TV episode would ever have allowed. And it has everything that you'd expect from "Stargate SG-1" -- icy strandings, some recurring characters (Apophis!), and alien nasties with overwhelming power. There's less of a moral dilemma here, but it's still pretty good.
It also has excellent scripting: plot threads drawn from the TV series, witty dialogue ("That is, after all, why we've come. Why we had to endure all of that singing. Get rid of the last bad guy and then there's cake"), and some nice quiet moments, such as Teal'c talking with Tomin about their bloodstained pasts. And they manage to throw some interesting twists at the audience, such as a shocking revelation about the Ori.
And seeing the actors as their SG-1 characters is like putting on a comfortable old shoe. Amanda Tapping and Michael Shanks are suitably brilliant and courageous, and Ben Browder gets to shine as a strong, slightly quirky soldier. Meanwhile, both Christopher Judge and Claudia Black are impressive as their "alternate timeline" selves who are still part of the Goa'uld empire.
And of course, Richard Dean Anderson utterly steals the show whenever he appears ("Hey, have you ever tried to find a bathroom in a pyramid?") and this is the last appearance of Don S. Davis as General Hammond. Rest in peace.
It's a little sad to see the main storylines of the Stargate universe end, but "Stargate: The Ark of Truth" and "Stargate: Continuum" are well worth seeing. Nice finales.
The Stargate premise has always been believable (if you're a sci-fi fan like me) and this is the best film made by the SG1 franchise.
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