Stranded: Countdown to Annihilation (2001)
Dolby Digital Trailer-Rain
|Year Of Production||2001|
|RSDL / Flipper||No/No||Cast & Crew|
|Region Coding||4||Directed By||Ed Raymond|
Roadshow Home Entertainment
Paul Michael Robinson
|Pan & Scan/Full Frame||None||English Dolby Digital 5.1 (448Kb/s)|
|Widescreen Aspect Ratio||1.78:1|
|Video Format||576i (PAL)|
|Original Aspect Ratio||1.78:1||Miscellaneous|
|Subtitles||English for the Hearing Impaired||Smoking||Yes|
|Annoying Product Placement||No|
|Action In or After Credits||No|
As a fan of movies in general, I often feel compelled to give something a go based on fairly scant reasoning. I chose to review this disc for two main reasons; firstly, I enjoy science fiction films set in outer space and secondly, I like Ice-T as an actor, especially as Fin in Law & Order : SVU. Not much of a reason I know, but giving things a chance has rewarded me in the past, with films such as Tube and Perfect Strangers being good examples. Unfortunately, this film is nowhere near as good as those two.
A Russian space station (built by an American company) has become disabled and is heading back towards earth's atmosphere. Accordingly, an American space shuttle is sent to rescue the crew including some Americans conducting an experiment on a new energy source. The rescue party is lead by veteran Ed Carpenter (Michael Dudikoff), and includes pilot Suzy Miller (Yvette Nipar). The National Security Agency (NSA) wants to get their hands on this new energy source and so arranges for NASA to include one of their men, James McKendrick (Hannes Jaenicke) in the mission. The fact that he has no experience or training in space flight doesn't seem to bother them. Meanwhile, McKendrick's partner, Larry Jeffries (Ice-T) is investigating a conspiracy which seems to be related to the problems in the space station. From there, pretty much every cliché in science fiction/space movie history is utilised until the Americans save the day.
The scenes in space are boring, full of bad dialogue and acting, have ordinary special effects and no build up of tension at all. The movie is made watchable by some decent action sequences set on earth featuring Ice-T's character. He looks like Marlon Brando compared to the rest of this cast. There is quite a reasonable car chase scene toward the end of the film. Don't attempt to understand the action scene at the beginning of the film, because other than introducing McKendrick and Jeffries it bears to relation to the rest of the film. This film is credited as being directed by Ed Raymond, however, I am lead to believe that this is actually one of the aliases used by low-budget horror director, Fred Olen Ray.
Frankly, this film is not worth your time. Of course, the fact that it has now been released under 5 different names should also be a giveaway.
The video quality is good but looks like a television show.
The feature is presented in a 1.78:1 aspect ratio 16x9 enhanced which is most likely the original aspect ratio.
The picture was clear and sharp throughout, with no evidence of low level noise. There was some light grain during some scenes and heavier grain on the fairly obvious stock space footage.
The colour was fine.
There were a few black and white specks on and off throughout the film but they did not intrude too much.
There are subtitles available in English for the Hearing Impaired which are clear and easy to read.
The audio quality is good.
This DVD contains only one audio option, a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack encoded at 448 Kb/s.
The music used in this film is not credited to a particular composer and I would guess that it has been put together from a library of music. It is fine but is nothing special.
The surround speakers are used regularly but don't stand out, although early in the film there are a few noticeable effects.
The subwoofer was used from time to time, however, it did not add anything spectacular, despite numerous opportunities such as explosions and other such events.
|Surround Channel Use|
The menu included was still and silent, but perfectly functional.
This trailer does an excellent job of making this seem like a better film than it is.
NOTE: To view non-R4 releases, your equipment needs to be multi-zone compatible and usually also NTSC compatible.
This movie is available in Region 1 as Black Horizon with a filmmakers commentary and photo gallery as extra features.
The video quality is good.
The audio quality is good.
The disc has only a theatrical trailer as an extra.
|DVD||Toshiba 1200, using Component output|
|Display||Sony FD Trinitron Wega KV-AR34M36 80cm. Calibrated with Digital Video Essentials (PAL). This display device is 16x9 capable. This display device has a maximum native resolution of 576i (PAL)/480i (NTSC).|
|Audio Decoder||Built in to amplifier/receiver. Calibrated with Video Essentials.|
|Speakers||Bose 201 Direct Reflecting (Front), Phillips SB680V (Surround), Phillips MX731 (Center), Yamaha YST SW90 (Sub)|