Saturday, March 8, 2008

A Saturday at the Movies

I've never reviewed a movie here before, and I probably will only do so occasionally. (For example, I'm counting the days for Enchanted to come out, and I'll probably inflict that upon you once I've seen it.) I was given an opportunity to review a publicist-provided DVD of Highlander, the Source, so I decided to give it a try.

Since I had not seen any Highlander films beyond the first one, I did a little research and found out the differences between Highlander the films and Highlander the TV series. This movie is definitely for viewers of Highlander, the TV series. In the interest of complete disclosure, I feel compelled to say that I've never seen an episode of the Highlander TV series. (In fact, I hardly watch TV at all.)

I bushed up on the TV series history at Wikipedia and sat down to give it a watch. A bit of background was definitely necessary, and I found myself explaining things to my husband as the movie went on. Here's the blurb:

Immortals, they have secretly dwelt among us for thousands of years but their origins have been shrouded in mystery. The answers, Prophets say, are to be found in The Source. The last band of eternal warriors, lead by Duncan MacLeod, the Highlander, have set out on a treacherous quest to find the origin of their immortality. But to learn the truth, they must first defeat The Guardian of the Source, a powerful killer who will destroy all who seek its secrets.

My husband didn't enjoy this movie at all, and I only found it slightly more enjoyable than he. The movie was grittier than I like, and the tendency to play loud rock music and use eerie lighting every time the Guardian came onscreen was annoying. And why was something called a "guardian" actually a destroyer? The blurb promises answers to longstanding mysteries of immortality, but I didn't hear any answers that I understood. The footage of the planets lining up deserves a complaint; we never see the planets from earth as huge disks in the sky. (It would really mess with our ocean tides if we did! )

However, I found the quest for mortality interesting, along with how the immortals lost their immortality the closer they drew near the Source. The ending had a gentle touch and probably put an end to any hope of any more sequels.

The DVD is supposed to have the usual features, but I could not get the closed captions or subtitles to work. This could have been operator error, or I may not have had a fully functional DVD. The special features include several features such as a behind-the-scenes documentary, storyboard-to-scene comparisons and a tribute to Bill Panzer, one of the producers, plus more.


Unknown said...

Glad you took the opportunity to review a DVD!
Was the acting good? I generally can handle gritty (doesn't bother me), but the one thing that usually destroys a movie/show is bad acting. I was watching on old show from Showtime last night that really had me interested...until I realized that the main actor was just a cheap ripoff of Keanu Reaves in The Matrix, which is just terrible considering the show had such amazing potential (it was Total Recall 2070 by the way...bad acting really ruined it for me).

Anywho, I think Highlander fans would still enjoy this...Highlander is sort of like that ultimate cult classic that never dies even if less-than-great adaptations are made.

Tia Nevitt said...

The acting by the lead characters was good, but some of the supporting characters sounded like they were reading a script.

I think you're right--Highlander fans will probably get some enjoyment out of it, kind of like how I used to enjoy all the Star Trek films, back when I followed Star Trek.

Ben Abba said...

Tia, Glad you enjoyed the Highlander SciFi. Another movie you would probably enjoy, although with much less violence, is "Jerome Bixby's The Man From Earth". It too is about immortality from another twist.

If you are serious about this subject of immortality, then you will be quite interested in my research and findings on this very topic.

I have summarized what I have found on my main blog:

Check out the post “Summary of the Facts” when you get a chance and then my follow up book “Secrets of an Immortal - An Eyewitness Account of 2,800 Years of History”.

scooper said...

I didn't watch all of the Highlander TV series, but I've seen a large portion of them. I watched this show on Sci-Fi when it was released last year and was quite pleased with the answers.
In the series, you meet all these Immortals and see where they've come from and watched them on their quest to be the last person standing, but for me, this movie totally explained why. They show everything and give Duncan a happy ending.

Carole McDonnell said...


DVD's are getting more and more specialized nowadays. You have to see which one it is before you buy it. Blu-ray, HD, or regular. Then there are those that can only be played on the DVD player of a computer. Can be very stressing sometimes.


Tia Nevitt said...

Stacy, I loaned my copy to a friend who is a Highlander fan. I'm interested to see what she thinks.

The story part was actually better than the film making. The strange special effects sometimes just gave me a headache. I'm glad you gave the perspective of a fan.

Robert said...

I personally enjoyed the original movie :) Sure, it's outdated and a bit corny at times, but it's a great concept and the villain was quite villainous!

Tia Nevitt said...

So did I, Robert! I guess we're dating ourselves!

Lisa said...

I enjoyed both the move and I watched the series!
There can be only one :-)