Wednesday, June 10, 2009
I finally got around to watching this film, dubbed on the cover as "Predator meets Beowulf", which I would've been fine with honestly. What I ended up with was something so much more enjoyable however and a solid sci-fi romp to boot.
Earth is an abandoned seed colony and the story takes place around 700 A.D. when our protagonist accidentally crashes in the middle of a Nordic tribal war. A monster is on the prowl, stalking and killing the local populace and at first the wayward astronaut is blamed, but then the truth is revealed and they join forces. I know, I know, this sounds incredibly tired as far as plots go, but it's done well, rating a solid effort throughout.
The special effects are pretty much flawless, and not overpowering, only relying on them a little bit at a time. The creature itself (which I don't want to violate any spoilers) is very well done, has some neat abilities, and only looks kind of CGI-esque, and only during certain scenes. The hero wields some nifty tech from off world, but it's not distracting, and the period costumes of the vikings, including the sets, are visually tasty.
The creature is bioluminescent
All in all, the movie is good, plain and simple. The special effects won't blow you away, but you won't be laughing at them either. The acting isn't Oscar worthy, but the story and plot will surprise you in the end with their thoroughness and detail. I knew I'd watch it, regardless of how it turned out, the moment I saw the trailer, I was pleasantly surprised having actually seen it now, and I think you will be too.
Did I mention Ron Perlman?
Big Red himself makes a (cameo) appearance in the film as Gunnar, the rival Viking chieftain. Wielding dual hammers, a full beard, and a thickly accented dialect, Perlman could easily pull off a proper Dwarf if not for his great height.