An astonishing breakthrough is taking shape on the planet Caprica. The rapidly evolving spheres of human and mechanical engineering have collided, along with the fates of two families. Joined by tragedy in an explosive ins... more »tant of terror, two rival clans led by powerful patriarchs, Joseph Adama (Esai Morales, Jericho) and Daniel Graystone (Eric Stoltz, The Butterfly Effect) duel in an era of questionable ethics, corporate machinations and unbridled personal ambition as the final war for humanity looms. The latest phenomenon from the executive producers of Battlestar Galactica (Ronald D. Moore and David Eick), set in a time over 50 years earlier, Caprica is entirely its own world - provocative, thrilling and startling relevant to our own.« less
Brian B. (b2theburns) from YOUNGTOWN, AZ Reviewed on 12/28/2010...
Never saw Battlestar Galatica and have not been much of a Sci-Fi fan but after watching this I will be watching the rest of the series. A very interesting concept. Glad I watched it.
June D. from N PLAINFIELD, NJ Reviewed on 9/29/2009...
you need to watch this dvd twice to take it all in.
there is a lot to look forward to in the next series.
for fans of battlestar galactica this is a MUST SEE.
The sci-fi greatness continues...
trashcanman | Hanford, CA United States | 04/22/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I was extremely skeptical when I heard about the proposed prequel to the greatest television science fiction saga of this generation. Attempting to cash in on the success of Battlestar Galactica so soon after the series ended seemed like a losing proposition doomed to mar an amazing franchise. Well, consider those fears alleviated. The first taste of "Caprica" is absolutely amazing. With no space battles and the themes of humanity's destruction and survival at the hands of their own creation already done to death, I feared for a lack of compelling material to further immerse me in the pre-genocide human society of the twelve worlds. All politics and no spaceships makes science fiction a dull genre. But what BSG did for the space opera, "Caprica" is set to do for cyberpunk. If BSG was Star Trek and Babylon 5, "Caprica" is Ghost in the Shell and The Matrix. I am beyond impressed.
The story unfolds as a terrorist attack by a youth seeking to draw attention to his monotheistic cause (most worship the old Greek gods). The result tears two families apart and in half a century's time will lead to the destruction of human society. But before that there is one hell of a story to be told. The themes on the social commentary buffet so far includes a much more bold dialogue on religion then even BSG gave us, a different angle on the definition of human as we know it, a frank look at a racist society, and an exploration of the logical extremes of future virtual existence. This is to say that once the internet and virtual reality become compatible, one hell of a can of worms will be opened.
Since this series premiere comes to us in movie form, the gods have shined upon us. As far as it's predecessor pushed the sexual envelope for a tv show, "Caprica" has easily bested it here. I don't know how they are going to cut this for television. There is abundant nudity, group sex, and some serious girl-girl going on in this film. Virtual human sacrifice in underground virtual hacker clubs speaks volumes about the social issues to be confronted and is damned disturbing. There is one violent death featuring a but of arterial spray as well. Still think science fiction is for kids? The idea of creating a virtual copy of yourself by hacking the information in your own brain and uploading it to a digital avatar, thereby achieving a brand of immortality is brilliant and the Frankenstein complex that leads a father who lost his daughter to cross lines that should never be crossed is stroke of absolute genius.
Familiarity with it's parent show will certainly deepen your appreciation of "Caprica", but it is not at all necessary. This is great science fiction, period. Now's your chance to get on board with what promises to be the best series in coming years. Don't miss it. Battlestar maniacs will get to see one of that show's enduring heroes in his formative years and witness the birth of the first Cylon in a heart-rending accident. But at it's heart this show -like Galactica- is about two things: massive universal concepts of humanity, and intimate relationships with the characters who inhabit this work of fiction. One cannot improve on that formula. There is no television show, no movie, nothing in entertainment that I am currently looking forward to more then this. If you are a fan of adult science fiction in any way, then this is what you need to be watching. And that goes double for BSG fans."
"It's a Cybernetic Lifeform Node - a Cylon."
TK-1308 | 04/20/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"With Battlestar Galactica now over, the team that brought us one of the best sci-fi shows of the last decade now step back into the series' own history with Caprica. Set 58 years before the fall of the colonies, this show has a very different feel and design from it's predecessor. The story centres around two familles, the Greystones and the Adams, both of which are devastated when a suicide bombing on a maglev train kills Daniel Greystone's daughter and Joseph Adams' wife and daughter. As the authorities investigate the bombing, evidence seems to indicate that Daniel's daughter Zoe may have been involved with a religious extremist group called 'Soldiers Of The One' who believe that there is only one god and not many. While Joseph tries to help his son William through the trauma, he is asked by some of his Tauron colleagues to 'help' them with a legal issue. Being a man of moral standing, Joseph has trouble with what they want and tries to find a way out of the situation. Daniel also has problems with both his wife, Amanda, and that his company's latest project, the U-78 (that's the old style Centurions!) is being threatened by an off-world corporation. As Daniel attempts to complete the project, a friend of Zoe's unwittingly shows him the way to solve his problem and a way to get his daughter back. Zoe's ability to manipulate digital information and environments leads Daniel into a virtual reality world of night-clubs, sex, excess, human sacrifices and digital avatars. Both Daniel and Joseph struggle to come to terms with their loss but in the wake of the tragedy they both begin to find something out about themselves. For those fans wanting a show like BSG, this is not it. Caprica is more akin to a modern day detective / legal / gangster drama with a few sci-fi elements in the mix. The show still deals with issues like BSG and tackles religion, racial tolerance, faith, monotheism vs. pantheism, terrorism, suicide bombings and the trauma of losing someone you love. Eric Stoltz and Esai Morales are excellent as Daniel and Joseph. It will be interesting to see how these characters develop as the show continues through the first season. The show sports the same high production values and standards that we expected from BSG which gives the show a very cinematic look. There are links to BSG and hopefully the plot lines about the first Cylon war will slowly develop as the series progresses. It was great to see the first Cylon Centurion perform it's basic tests and utter those immortal words "By your command." Caprica has huge potential so lets just hope it gets the chance to fill in some back story for those who love Battlestar. "So say we all!""
Tim Lasiuta | Red Deer, Alberta | 04/14/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Caprica: One Hell of a Beginning! How `human' can robots be? Can they possess a soul? Can they feel? Can they have memories? These are four important questions that Ronald D Moore and David Eick ask in "Caprica", a new stand alone series that continues (sort of) in the vein of Galactica. On screen, "Caprica" revolves around two influential Caprican families joined in an instant of terrorism. The death of two children bind them in grief, then bind them in a scientific experiment that dares to ask the question: Can you bring the dead back to life in another `body'? A secondary theme that runs through the film is that of Monotheism, and a belief in a God who is all knowing, and powerful. Right and wrong smacks in the face of corporate right and wrong and profit margins. The world of Caprica, as envisioned by Moore and Eick, is one of virtual nightclubs, modern cities, space travel, computer technology, and galactic economies that, in some ways, is not so far off ours today. The teens travel in their virtual club, engaging in random sexual acts, witnessing human sacrifice, killing, drinking, and amidst this debauchery, find One god who makes sense of it all and empowers Zoey to change the world before her death. Business legend, Daniel Greystone, in his grieving, `meets' his dead daughter in the club, and seeks to re-introduce her to the world. Joseph Adama, has another reaction, yet still becomes part of the project. As a film, this in incredible. There is conflict. There is theology. There are moralistic arguments. There is crass commercialism. There is incredible technology that seeks to blur the line between man and god. There is faith. And there is pure, unadulterated lust. There are few film scenes that can be considered powerful. Images like the unveiling of Darth Vader in Star Wars, Rick saying goodbye to Ilsa and Victor Lazlo in Casablanca, John Wayne walking away from his niece in The Searchers, and Rocky raising his arms in victory will never be forgotten. Today, we have a new addition to that list. As the first cyborg/human robot rises and dials her friend then speaks with the voice of Zoey....a chill ran down my spine. I can hardly wait for the series. Tim Lasiuta
Interesting and Thoughtful
Avid Reader | Willow Springs, MO United States | 04/26/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"When I first heard the Sci Fi Channel (or as it's soon to be called: Syfy) was going to make a prequel series to Battlestar Galactica I was somewhat hesitant. Not because I was one of those science fiction snobs who thinks the genre can only be about space battles, aliens, and a certain startship that shall remain nameless. No, I was hesitant because I knew the network's history of meddling. The disaster that was season three of BSG can be squarely placed on the shoulders of the network suits. The idea of bringing the history of the colonies to life has the potential to be interesting and thought provoking television. After viewing the finished product recently released on DVD I have to say they've succeeded in many ways.
The story of Caprica takes place "58 years before the fall" of the colonies. At the heart of the story are two families: the Graystones, a wealthy family whose patriarch founded a technology company (a company that inadvertently leads to the downfall of all mankind); and the Adamas, a less-than-wealthy family from the world of Tauron. Joseph Adama, father of the future Admiral Adama (now only an eleven-year-old boy) is attempting to hide his family's ties to Tauron by changing their name to Adams. Both of these families are drawn together by tragedy when Graystone's daughter, Zoe, is killed in a terrorist attack by a monotheistic group along with Joseph Adama's wife and daughter.
By accident, Graystone discovers that his daughter created a fully functional avatar in a virtual world where she and her friends, along with the youth of Caprica, go to escape their mundane world. Using his daughter's work and a piece of stolen technology, Graystone downloads Zoe into a robotic form his company is working on for the Defense Ministry. This scene alone is one of the most eerie of the entire episode. As you watch Zoe attempt to get comfortable with her new metal body and see the look on Daniel Graystone's face as he watches, it's like seeing a father witnessing the birth of his child. Very Frankenstein-esque.
Caprica is filled with the some intriguing ideas and concepts. Of course, you have the usual BSG-speak. "Frak" is used often, you have the gods, and the twelve colonies named for astrological signs. What will make Caprica stand out is its ability to flesh out many of the concepts that we just took at face value with the parent series. In this pilot alone were learn more about the religion and prejudices of the colonies than we ever did in Battlestar Galactica, but it wasn't appropriate for BSG to tackle those topics. Caprica is designed to do just that.
One of the more intriguing concepts I hope Caprica will tackle are the people of Tauron. Like any large society, the people of Caprica have their prejudices and there seems to be a strong prejudice against the people of Tauron, or "dirt eaters" as some call them. From what we can glean from the pilot, the people of Tauron are peasants who toil at hard labor and are looked down upon by the rest of the colonies. Out of this servitude an organized crime group has formed; a group with close ties to the Adama clan. From what we see in this pilot episode, the people of Tauron look similar to South American Indian cultures such as the Mayans or Aztecs in how their presented. It will be interesting to see how this is developed.
This pilot has some fun "ah ha!" moments. One of the more interesting "ah ha!" moments comes when we learn just how the Cylons developed their belief in the One True God. That revelation alone makes everything coming in 58 years even more understandable. It's moments like this along with scenes showing the development of the Cybernetic Lifeform Node, or Cylon, that will make Caprica an intriguing series to watch. It's these moments that allow me to forgive the series for starting out a little slow. Hopefully, Caprica can find a fan base that will make it worthwhile for Syfy to keep it on the air for a few years. "
An excellent start
A. Whitehead | Colchester, Essex United Kingdom | 04/29/2009
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Tensions are rising between the Twelve Colonies. The poorer planets are feeling oppressed and exploited by the richer, whilst the more powerful worlds are arrogant and decadent. On Caprica, richest and most powerful of the twelve worlds, people live increasingly empty lives. A new technological innovation, the holoband, has led to the creation of stunningly convincing artificial worlds or 'V-clubs' where young people can murder and torture one another for pleasure. Sickened by the collapse in morals around them, a small group of people have been swayed by the argument that there is one all-powerful, all-knowing god who can save them if they chose to be saved. But some the followers of the One God believe more direct action is needed, and one troubled young man proves his faith by stepping onto a packed commuter train laden with explosives.
In the aftermath of the disaster, two men are brought together by shared grief: computer programmer and entrepreneur Daniel Graystone and lawyer Joseph Adams. Both of them lost a daughter on the train, Zoe and Tamara, and both are searching for answers. Daniel soon learns that his daughter may not have just been an innocent bystander and, buried in the depths of the V-club, Zoe hid a programme that may provide him with the breakthrough he needs in the creation of a new military robot for the Caprican government: the Cybernetic Lifeform Node. For Joseph, whose brother is a high-ranking member of the Tauron crime syndicate, his life becomes more dangerous and complex as he tries to provide a living for his son, William, and find a way to cope with his own sense of loss.
Caprica is a prequel series to Battlestar Galactica, beginning fifty-eight years before the Fall of the Twelve Colonies and about six years before the beginning of the First Cylon War. Absolutely no knowledge of BSG is required to watch this show. Whilst BSG was a space opera, Caprica is resolutely a planet-bound drama, focusing on the characters, the politics, the crime syndicates and scientists of their world. There isn't a single space shot in the whole pilot movie, not even an establishing shot of Caprica, which seems to be a declaration that this show is going to try to do something different.
Yet it shares more similarities with the progenitor show than just a shared background. It's similarly ruthless and hard-edged. The pilot does not shy away from scenes of violence. In fact, the opening sequence in the V-club is far more explicit in violence and nudity than anything seen on BSG. The questions raised in BSG about artificial sentience and what constitutes a person or a soul are explored in even greater depth in this opening episode, and it's fascinating to see Caprica as technically more advanced than it is later on. Those claiming this show isn't science fiction simply because it focuses more on an AI singularity than on space battles are seriously in error. This show has the potential to be a far more hardcore SF show than BSG itself.
The characters chosen to tell this story work very well. Eric Stoltz plays Daniel Graystone as a driven man whose desire to learn, to innovate and to always come out on top is beginning to compromise his morals, and this character development is complicated by the death of his daughter and the manner in which he deals with his grief. Esai Morales brings significant gravitas to his role as Joseph Adams, and you could easily imagine him being related to Edward James Olmos (and yes, there's a reason why the surname gets changed). The interplay between these two very different men is interesting to watch and the scenes with the two actors are impressively handled.
The rest of the cast likewise impresses. Polly Walker, recently seen as Atia in Rome, takes on the role of Sister Clarice Willow, the head of the school where the cult of the One God has taken root. She has only a few scenes but channels an impressive amount of intensity into a very different role. Alessandra Toressani as Zoe Graystone is a bit more variable, but most pulls off a very tricky and demanding role, rising above the simple 'troubled teen' archetype to take the character into a somewhat more disturbing direction. Paula Malcomson as Amanda Graystone also gives a remarkably good performance as the mother who has to cope with the loss of her daughter.
Special effects-wise, Caprica obviously doesn't have tons of space shots like BSG, but if anything it has a harder job, transforming downtown Vancouver into Caprica City without it standing out to the viewer. There's a couple of impressive sequences (the destruction of the train, most notably), but mostly their work is confined to establishing shots which, curiously, aren't as impressive as the stunning shot of Caprica City in the BSG finale (which I'd assumed was test-run for Caprica). Bear McCreary is also on board for the music and his work is initially more muted than BSG, though BSG fans will take great delight at spotting a couple of themes from the parent show that are deployed at strategic moments.
Caprica's pilot episode does have one significant problem: it feels like we cover about 50% of the plot needed to get us to the show's end-point (presumably the start of the war) in just the pilot by itself. I'm not sure if there's enough plot strands to fill a single 20-episode season, let alone a multi-year ongoing series, and this raises the prospect of dreaded filler episodes (and BSG showed that this team are particularly inept at handling filler). But, given that the pilot has an excellent cast, solid writing, a compelling and dark storyline and an atmosphere not quite like anything I've seen before in SFTV, I'm more than willing to give them a chance to show what they can do.
Caprica's pilot (****½) is available on DVD now in the United States. The pilot will air on the Sci-Fi Channel in the United States and on Sky One in the UK and Ireland in early 2010, followed by the rest of the first season."