In the mid twenty-first century, mankind has reached a point in its technological advances to enable colonization of the far reaches of the universe. DARK STAR is a futuristic scout ship traveling far in advance of colony ships. Armed with Exponential Thermosteller Bombs, it prowls the darkest reaches of space on a mission to seek out and destroy unstable planets ahead of the colonist. But there is one obstacle that its crew members did not count on -- one of the ship's thinking and talking bombs is lodged in the bay, threatening to destroy the entire ship and crew! DARK STAR was originally intended to be a 68 minute film. Jack Harris, the Hollywood producer, convinced the filmmakers to shoot 15 minutes of extra footage and he released the expanded version theatrically in 1975 through Bryanston Pictures.
G (General Audience)
Factory sealed DVD
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Looks and sounds as expected. Decent upgrade from previous DVD releases. Please Note: Amazon lists the "Special Features" as "None." Which is wrong. I believe it was changed because it initially stated that both the 68 min. student film, and 83 min. feature film version of the film, were each present on this release -- and that isn't true. So they simply deleted that information and substituted "None" in the Special Features field. A common mistake made by Amazon. There "are" Special Features. They are the same as VCI's previous Hyperdrive DVD edition, and are as follows:
1. Let There Be Light: The Odyssey of Dark Star The Extended Version (feature length documentary in HD) 2. Audio commentary track by "super fan" Andrew Gilchrist 3. On-camera interview with science fiction author Alan Dean Foster (SD) 4. 3D Visual Guide to the Dark Star spaceship (SD) 5. An interview with actor Brian Narelle (Doolittle)(SD) 6. Text trivia 7...
Dark Star was a blind buy for me, I had heard of it yet never watched it in it's entirety. I am a fan of early John Carpenter work as well as sci-fi films like Alien, 2001: a Space Odyssey as well as other more independent style sci-fi works.
Firstly, Dark Star is not meant to be taken seriously. It is a very odd film, and if not properly prepared, you may not know how to take the tone of the film. There is a disclaimer at the beginning of the movie to try and explain the history of the film, which really gives a good description of the production and outcome of this film.
People who enjoy John Carpenter films as well as the writings of Dan O'Bannon, who did the special computer effects for Star Wars and wrote Alien, Total Recall and Screamers will also recognize the style and enjoy the overall feeling of Dark Star.
As for the extras, Dark Star gives just enough bonus features for the style of the movie. I could not ask for anything more...
Before approaching this film, it's content or the technical aspects of the Blu-ray transfer, one must remember it started as an undergrad student short done by John Carpenter while he was at the USC film school. Carpenter kept working on it for several years to make it a full length feature film. Bottom Line: it was done in 16mm with nearly zero budget or any other resources.
The screenplay was created by John Carpenter and Dan O'Bannon (of Alien screenplay fame), with Dan also playing one of the roles. Don't take this movie seriously as it was intended to be a dark comedy. There are clues dropped, particularly with some of the dialog, especially with the seemingly sentient bombs, and if you don't pick up on that, you should with the "alien" they've taken on board as a mascot and its errant behavior. The ending is straight out of a Ray Bradbury novel (won't reveal which here as it would be a spoiler).
My expectations weren't all that high for a movie that...
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