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Ultramarines Movie Review

Ultramarines Movie Review

 

  Ultramarines The Movie, is based around the popular science fiction war game known as Warhammer 40K produced by Games workshop. The setting for Warhammer 40k, is not the happy go lucky utopian future that finds its way into most sci fi stories, no far from it. In the future there is only war.

 

  It is the 41st millennium and the race of man has created a galaxy spanning empire that is at war with several different factions. Humans have learned to travel across the cosmos via the warp, but warp space is not empty, in fact it is home to both demons and the evil gods of Chaos.

 

Space Marines

And we shall know no fear.

 

  The space marines or as they are known in the setting The Adeptus Astartes are bio engineered soldiers who wear power armor and fight for the Emperor against all the enemies of man, which includes most alien races and the powers and soldiers of Chaos.

 

  The Emperor is worshiped as a god and was placed inside of the golden throne (a life support system), nearly ten-thousand years ago, after he was mortally wounded in a battle during the imperial civil war known as the Horus Heresy.

 

  The Ultramarines are the best of the best of the Emperors space marines and they are based out of the fortress world of Macragge.

 

Space marine with Bolter

The Emperor protects, but let's keep a loaded Bolter ready just encase.

 

  Now that we have this background information out of the way it is time to turn our attention to the Ultramarines movie. The film opens with Captain Severus (Terrence Stamp) training several untested new recruits to the Ultramarines including Proteus (Sean Pertwee). After a small sparring match between Captain Severus and Proteus, the new members of the Ultramarines swear their allegiance upon a holy relic in a shrine aboard their spaceship.

 

Space marines dueling

I admit it, you are better than I am. Then why are you smiling? Because I know something you don't know. And what is that? I am not left-handed.

 

  The Ultramarines receive a distress call from the imperial fists stationed on the shrine planet Mithron and make their way there to investigate. The new recruits see this as their chance to finally prove themselves in battle, while the platoons veteran apothecary Pythol (Donald Sumpter) is more cautious about the prospects that lay before them.

 

  When the platoon arrives on Mithron they find that an entire company of Imperial Fists have been wiped out in a battle against Chaos Space Marines (Space Marine chapters who fell under the powers of the Gods of Chaos during the Horus Heresy).

 

  As the distress beacon is still active they decide to make their way to the shrine to see if there are any survivors still operating the beacon or if it is on auto repeat.

 

flamethrower

Okay where are the marshmallows?

 

  The film remains very close to the source material that it is based on with a fairly simple but good story, but if you are not familiar with said material you will be left with a few questions about what exactly is going on.

 

  One of the good sides of this movie is its originality, it does not follow the standard Hollywood formula, so you will not see any shoehorned in love interest, what you are left with is a tale about a young green soldier who wants to prove himself.

 

  The film makers decided to take the CGI animation route for this movie instead of going with live action, which when done right can be a great experience. However the general animation of this film is terrible, and you would think that this movie was made in the late 1990's not in 2011. It's pretty bad when you can find better animation in a PS2 (Playstation 2) videogame cut scene then you can generally find in this movie. This is especially disappointing as the close up animation of the individual characters was done fairly well, but other footage almost looked like still animation of actual plastic war game figures.

 

Heresy I say

I accuse you of treason and heresy citizen.

 

  Fortunately the money saved on animation went to acquiring some very talented voice actors such as Terrence Stamp, John Hurt, Sean Pertwee, Steve Waddington, Donald Sumpter, Johnny Harris, Ben Bishop, Gary Martin, and Christopher Finney. I have to salute these folks for doing a good job and not phoning in their performances.

 

  This movie leaves me torn as a fan of the Warhammer 40K universe, it was nice to finally see a movie based on the setting, but looking at it from an outsiders perspective, I do not think I could have sat through such terrible animation as a non fan.

 

Final verdict for Ultramarines The Movie 5/10

 

  Overall the poor animation and limited niche nature of this film, hurt it very badly in the end. If you're a fan of the setting and can ignore the bad animation then give it a try, but otherwise I cannot recommend this movie.

 

 -Professor

 

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