Anyone who has been to a Star Trek convention will have heightened appreciation for Galaxy Quest. George Takei, who played Sulu on the original Trek, was asked about the film at a convention and he responded, “That was real. I know that guy played by Tim Allen”. There are many classic parodies of science fiction films but I think this is one of the most entertaining.
The cast of the cult classic sci-fi series Galaxy Quest are now relegated to convention hell. They aren’t really fond of each other but stay together because they need the money. Jason Nesmith (Allen) is too self-absorbed to notice how pitiful their lives have become. Alexander Dane (Rickman) can’t shake his logical alien Dr. Lazarus. Let’s not forget Gwen DeMarco (Weaver) who seems to have limited dialogue, and Nesmith has no idea the rest of the cast hates him. (Sound at all familiar?)
Nesmith accepts an invitation to what he thinks is a cameo in an amateur film. The “filmmakers” are actually aliens who have seen broadcasts of Galaxy Quest and believe the series is an historical record. They reconstruct the famous starship and want the cast of actors to rescue them from a lizard-like bad guy.
With the help of Earth-bound fanatics of the show, the crew manages to save the Thermains using a mysterious device known only as the Omega 13. The device was mentioned in a series cliffhanger but the show was cancelled before its function was ever revealed.
Galaxy Quest is equipped nicely with a Dolby Digital 5.1 soundtrack. The dialogue is clean and always decipherable. There are plenty of exciting ambient sounds placed with pinpoint precision throughout the mix. I was very pleased with the wide range of frequency response with sharp highs and thunderous subs. The only flaw I discovered was the fact that the score was not consistent. It was too loud in rare occasions, and at one point during the climax on the ship’s bridge, it seemed to become buried at times.
There is also an interesting audio track which translates the dialogue into the fictional Thermain language. If you have the patience, it’s a real hoot. It can make the film funnier than it already is.
Galaxy Quest is presented in its original theatrical aspect ratio of 2.35:1. I was particularly pleased with the flesh tones on this disc. Skin colors are usually the most unnatural aspect on most video releases. This disc absolutely shines in that respect. The texture of the lizard make-up is also very impressive. The print displays no flaws or edge distortion, and the blacks are rich and deep. This is important as this film makes wonderful use of shadows and, of course, outer space.
“On Location in Space” is a standard behind the scenes feature. You’ll find the usual interview clips and special effects highlights. I enjoyed the few deleted scenes… I agree with the cuts but this stuff is just so funny that it’s worth checking them out. The menus are entertaining and well rendered, and Trailers and the normal text based bios round out this discs features. Finally “The Omega 13” is a little coda you can’t access until you’ve watched the entire film.
There are times I’m not sure what kind of a movie this really is. The obvious Trek parodies aside, the film is actually not a bad sci-fi film in its own right. The special effects are top notch and the cast is superb displaying plenty of chemistry. You can almost believe these guys have been working together for 20 years. So charge your Beryllium Spheres, engage the Omega 13, and most of all “Never give up. Never surrender”.