DVD File (Starburst Reviews) DVD File by David Richardson
VideoFile by Ian Atkins

From Starburst's monthly Reviews section
selected from Starburst #264

Selected this month:
Star Trek: First Contact, and Stigmata on DVD, and the latest Stargate SG-1 releases on VHS

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• Chicken Run
• Bats • The Road to El Dorado
• Teaching Mrs Tingle and Stuart Little
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Star Trek: First Contact
DVD R2 • Patrick Stewart, Brent Spiner, Jonathan Frakes, 106 minutes • 2.35:1 • Out (UK) July 31

Star Trek First Contact on DVD - pre-order it form BlackStar today

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The Movie

An essential DVD release for one of the finest Trek features, as Captain Picard and crew travel back in Time to prevent the Borg from assimilating the entire human race. Kicking off at Warp 12, First Contact is a slick action extravaganza with stand-out turns by Stewart, Spiner, and Alice Krige as the serpent-like Borg Queen. For his first time in the feature director’s chair, Frakes successfully juggles dark horror and lighter moments, resulting in a movie that will satisfy both the Trekkers and mainstream audiences.

Starburst rating: 9

The Extras

The DVD presentation is stunning, with an anamorphic widescreen transfer and speaker-blasting Dolby Digital 5.1 sound. Paramount skimp on the additional features however: just two theatrical trailers

Starburst rating: 3

Stargate SG-1 • Volumes 2.9 & 2.10
VHS PAL • Two episodes per tape
24th July • Cert tbc • MGM Home Entertainment

Stargate SG-1 Vol 2.9

Order them from Black Star today! Vol 2.9Vol 2.10

Shanks for Everything

Richard Dean Anderson, Amanda Tapping, Michael Shanks

More fun, explosions and well-thought out SF with O’Neill and crew in the latest releases from MGM. Volume 2.9 features further Apophis troubles in Serpent’s Song, when SG-1’s dying nemesis asks for sanctuary on Earth. The series unearths that old bodyswap chestnut for Holiday, in which a piece of alien technology is responsible for Daniel (Michael Shanks) suddenly not feeling quite himself.

In Volume 2.10’s One False Step, an expedition to an alien planet results in the local populace being struck down with a virus and a solution needs to be found quickly. The second episode Show and Tell brings a new threat to the team and the stargate when news reaches them that an invisible race are intending to infiltrate and take over. Some great effects make this a notable release, with some strong performances as the threat is revealed.

DVD R2 • Patricia Arquette, Gabriel Byrne, Jonathan Pryce • 102 mins • 2.35:1 • Out July 10

Stigmata on DVD - order from BlackStar today!

Order it from Black Star today! Retail DVD
(also available on rental in VHS)

The Movie

In a surreal piece of casting, Byrne follows his stint in End of Days (also reviewewd on DVD this month) with the role of Stigmata’s Father Andrew. He’s a Vatican priest despatched to investigate the case of Frankie Paige (Arquette), a young woman suffering unexplained wounds that match those of Christ at the crucifixion. Grisly bathtub lacerations, bloody lashings and unsettling imagery follow, in a film that uses all the tricks in the book, yet succeeds as a pop trash take on The Exorcist.

Starburst rating: 7

The Extras

The Stigmata DVD scoops this month’s menu award, with animated frames and a neat cursor trick (as you select an option, the lettering turns into a demonic font). There are six deleted scenes, including the alternate ending and the discarded opening, which features Father Alameida’s eerie suicide. Director Rupert Wainwright explains his reasons for excising them in a bubbly feature commentary track, together with tons of production minutiae (never make a movie with birds, he cautions). A superb 25 minute documentary Divine Rites (which is exclusive to this Region 2 release) explores incidents of Stigmata through history. Experts discuss real-life cases, there are some horrific photographs of wounds, while the cast and crew talk us through the movie’s production. The terrific package is rounded off with a lacklustre Natalie Imbruglia music video, and the enticing theatrical trailer.

Starburst rating: 9

Reviews © Visual Imagination 2000. Not for reproduction