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DVD Review

DVD cover

Battlestar Galactica
The Movie (1978)


Starring: Richard Hatch, Dirk Benedict, Lorne Greene and John Colicos
Distributor: Fabulous Films Ltd / Fremantle Media Enterprises
RRP: £14.99
Certificate: PG
Release Date: 28 March 2016

There was much talk recently about bringing back the original Battlestar Galactica, the one based on the original 1978 Glen Larson show. Although Galactica 80 is for the most part best forgotten, the original show did have much going for it...

Battlestar Galactica: The Movie (1978. 2 hrs, 04 min, 18 sec) is the shortened version of the show's pilot. Originally conceived as a series of made for television movies, the pilot eventually was shown in differing lengths, the longest being the nearly three hour pilot.

The show premise, while being essentially the same as the reimagining, had some major differences. The original show had a strong Mormon theme running through, rather than the more generalist religious themes found in Galactica.

The story opens with the human race collecting together their Battlestars, one for each colony of man, to finally sign a peace accord with their long term enemy, the Cylons. In the original these were not the constructions of man but rather a lizard race that had been wiped out by their own creations, a hint of which can be seen in their supreme leader.

You would have had to have been living under a rock not to know that the meeting does not go well and the humans are all but wiped out, all but the Battlestar Galactica, who gathers together the survivors of the human race, heading out into the unknowns of space in order to find the thirteenth tribe and Earth.

The show stared Richard Hatch, Dirk Benedict and Lorne Greene and for the most part the special effects still look good today. The show did have the issue of not having a budget which matched its ambitions so there is some repetition of effects, a problem which came more marked as the series progressed.

Presumably this is being released as it’s been some time since it was last seen on DVD. This single disc presents the show with a widescreen letterbox 1.85:1, there are DD audio tracks in English, Spanish, French, German and Italian, as well as numerous subtitle tracks. There are a couple of small extras on the disc including Production Notes, Cast and filmmaker`s Biographies and Web Links.

Probably, if you have not seen the pilot, this will be a chance to finally pick it up, but I’m not sure that there is anything fresh here to entice a long standing Galactica fan.


Charles Packer

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