Tuesday, April 1, 2014

War Of The Worlds: Goliath (Blu-ray Review)

USA, Malaysia/2012
Directed By: Joe Pearson
Written By: Joe Pearson, David Abramowitz
Starring: Peter Wingfield, Adrian Paul, Tony Eusoff
Color/85 Minutes/Not Rated
Region A
Release Date: April 1, 2014

The Film
H.G. Wells' classic science fiction story of aliens invading Earth and waging war on humans was first published in 1898. Since then it has been adapted into a feature no less than 9 times (three times in 2005 alone!) along with television series, numerous radio shows, and just about every other form of media you can think of. WAR OF THE WORLDS: GOLIATH is among the latest, and is perhaps the first anime adaptation. 

Set during the conflicts of WWI, an attacking alien race is back to complete the destruction of the human race after it failed to do so just 15 years earlier. Leaving cities in ruins and killing well over 100 million people with their heat rays that turned humans to dust the aliens were not ready for the most dangerous killer on Earth, germs. Having never been exposed to the germs on Earth the extraterrestrial beings couldn't withstand the organisms we have grown immunities to. Now in the middle of our own planet's conflicts they're back, and humanities hopes rely on A.R.E.S. the world's global army that has reverse engineered some of the alien technology. 

WAR OF THE WORLDS: GOLIATH is what happens when the classic H.G. Wells story is set amidst a world war, influenced by Steam Punk aesthetics and draws influence from many of the popular Sci-Fi films of the last few decades. There is a lengthy scene taken straight from Independence Day that shows the obvious influence of modern Sci-Fi blockbusters along with the many voice actors that have numerous credits in the genre. This film is almost non stop action. Shit gets blown up left and right, the giant alien tripods are going bonkers from the very start and they have no remorse. The amount of people that get turned to dust makes me wish that this was a cheesy, live action summer blockbuster. The animation is really quality work, combining digital and traditional hand drawings. I won't sit here and pretend I'm a giant anime fan or that I know a lot about it, I don't. I do know that this is a fun spin on the classic story that doesn't demand much from the viewer other than wanting to kick some alien ass!

The Audio & Video
Packaged with a Blu-ray 3D and standard Blu-ray discs, the 1.78:1 widescreen transfer is gorgeous. The levels of detail on the alien and human spacecrafts and war machines is strong and lifelike. The WWI era planes in one particular dogfight scene feature scrapes and scuffs that you can almost feel. Colors are vibrant as you would expect and black levels are deep. The DTS-HD surround audio track is packed with special effects that will give your system a workout. The mix is loud and clear and pretty damn great. 

The Extras
Several featurettes are included:
-Stories Before The War
-The Movie In Storyboards
-The Art  Of War
-The Lovers
A trailer for the film is also included

The Bottom Line
If you're at all into animated Sci-Fi films you'll want to check out WAR OF THE WORLDS: GOLIATH. It's a quick and easy watch with almost endless action. 


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