When a beautiful human-alien hybrid (Natasha Henstridge) escapes from observation, scientist XavierFitch (Ben Kingsley) dispatches a crew of experts to find her before she is able to fulfill her horrific purpose: to mate w... more »ith unsuspecting men and produce offspring that could destroy mankind. As her deadly biological clock ticks rapidly, Fitch and his team are hurled into a desperate battle in which the fate of humanity itself hangs in the balance!« less
"While the film itself is a love it or hate hit kind of thing (as far as the story and actors and whatnot), I would like to rate the actual quality of the disk and what separates it from the dvd version.
The Blu-ray version of this movie is much better than all the other version. Better quality images, better quality sound, and you even get a cool glimpse into Giger's creative process with a extra on the blu-ray that shows him creating the "evil train" sequence.
Personally, I liked the movie - but I think what most people want to know is, is it worth buying the blu-ray version vs. the dvd version and the answer to that question is DEFINATELY!"
The Mating Game
cookieman108 | Inside the jar... | 10/25/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"For years we humans have been looking for signs of life other than what's on this great, greasy mud ball we affectionately know as Earth. We've sent probes, satellites, and signals out into that vast darkness...we've searched the heavens with powerful telescopes and listened with highly sophisticated equipment design to detect anything that could point to the possibility of intelligence other than our own...and for all our efforts we got...squat...that is, until now...
Directed by Roger Donaldson (I was a bit wary here, as this was the man responsible for awful films Cocktail and Cadillac Man, but he did a really good film in that of No Way Out, so I'm torn...), Species (1995) stars certainly an interesting cast including the very busy Ben Kingsley (Ghandi), who slated to appear in a whopping seven films in 2005 (I think he's trying to compete with Gene Hackman and Michael Caine for the title of most prolific actor), Michael Madsen (Reservoir Dogs, Kill Bill Vol's 1 and 2), Alfred Molina (Doc Ock in a little film called Spider-Man 2), Forest Whitaker (I'm still highly annoyed with this guy, who I generally like as an actor, for appearing in John Travolta's ego stroking pet project Battlefield Earth...damn you John Travolta!), Marg Helgenberger (CSI), and introducing every sci-fi nerd's wet dream, the highly curvaceous and infinitely squeezalicious Natasha Henstridge (I can't help wonder if this film would have done as well had they chosen another actress, say Rosie O'Donnell? I suppose not...)
Anyway, it seems all of our efforts to find intelligent life in space has finally paid off, as a message was received, one detailing plans regarding re-sequencing human DNA to create a human/alien hybrid. The gooberment project, headed by Xaiver Fitch (Kingsley) has succeeded, creating a new life form in that of girl known as Sil (who later becomes Henstridge, due to a rapid, internal development process). Now, I would have thought it unwise to screw around with space DNA, as who knows what you'll get, but they also received instructions for a limitless energy supply from the same source, so they assumed the aliens who sent the message were friendly...gullible fools. After it's decided that Sil is progressing too quickly, and may become dangerous, the secret group agrees the best course is termination, but Sil disagrees, and escapes. Since it's not feasible to announce to the general public that there's a dangerous human/alien hybrid on the loose, one created by our own gooberment, in the newspapers and on TV, Fitch assembles a specialized team to track and kill Sil before she reaches her full potential, something they are still unsure of...but here's a hint...it involves making with the boom boom and the pitter patter of tiny little feet...or claws, or whatever...
I saw this film with a married couple when first released, and my friend and I thought it was pretty darn good, but his wife felt different. When asked why she didn't like the movie, she said "There was too much nudity." At that point I left well enough alone rather than try to explain how, since Sil was unfamiliar with our customs, clothing, at times, was optional for her. I will agree there was a whole lot of nekkidness, but hey, I'm a guy, and I'd be lying if I said I didn't like to see beautiful nekkid women. Obviously Henstridge was chosen for her assets, and her willingness to display them, but she did say much later that the role opened many doors for her...I'm sure it did...the plot, a group of diverse specialists gathered together to deal with an unusual problem, smacks of any number of Michael Crichton stories, as they all play out this way, but it's not done quite as well here as it is in a Crichton story. The actors do well enough with what they're given, but there was shallowness in each of their characters. I suppose this matters little, as the film is meant to be just fun and exciting, and not an in depth character study. I did find Whitaker as Dan the empathic character a bit annoying at times, as his abilities seemed to work with pinpoint accuracy at times, but conveniently fail at critical moments. Madsen, as the gooberment `liquidator' brings nothing we haven't seen in a handful of his other roles, making me think he graduated from The Keanu Reeves School of Acting with honors. The plot has its problems, but it seems to care little as it rolls along at a fairly speedy pace, and does keep the audience engaged. I thought some of the characters were a bit too `hands on', specifically Fitch, especially since he seemed to have a whole lot of resources available to him (as we all know, the gooberment has the deep pockets, and seem to care little for how they throw our tax dollars around). The special effects do look really good, and the distinctive H.R. Giger (Alien) influences are very apparent (he actually design the human/alien hybrid creature) and entirely worth any fan of Swiss auteur's surrealistic work to check this film out.
The wide screen picture on this DVD looks really good, and the audio is available in three formats DTS 5.1, Dolby Digital 5.1, Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround. I'm not entirely sure what qualifies this as a `special edition', other than two separate commentary tracks, one featuring director Roger Donaldson and actors Michael Madsen and Natasha Henstridge, and a second with director Roger Donaldson, producer Frank Mancuso Jr., visual effects supervisor Richard Edlund, and creature and special makeup effects creator Steve Johnson. There is a trailer for this film, along with a few others for other MGM releases, and a sneak peek into Species 3 (which I think is going to be a direct to video release), but not a whole heck of a lot else. I just thought the popularity of the film would have meant more...like a Giger video sketchbook or something...oh well...
SciFi Action with Sex Appeal
Mart | Tampa, FL USA | 08/11/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Don't be mistaken, the focus of this movie is to entertain. Mission accomplished! If your looking for a deep meaningful movie forget it. If your offended by nudity forget it. If action, gun play, and horror offend you forget it.Species is a SciFi\Action thriller with sex appeal. From the opening to the close of the movie your senses are bombarded with the goings on of a very sexy and very often nude Natasha Henstridge's fight for her alien life. The story line is solid and cohesive, with a few twists and turns thrown in this classic SciFi tale. Species is filled with: great actions sequences, excellent sound, very high quality production, and good acting from a superb cast. A classic mix of SciFi and Action required viewing for any true SciFi buff and an excellent choice."
Bindy Sue FrÝnkŁnschtein | under the rubble | 11/07/2004
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Poor SIL (Natasha Henstridge), she's just a gal on the hunt for l-o-v-e. Too bad she's a human / alien hybrid who slaughters more people than a runaway threshing machine! Raised in a glass cage in a top secret facility, SIL found out as a young girl that her creators (led by Ben Kingsley) had scheduled her for termination. So, she promptly escaped, hopped a cargo train, killed a pervert who tried to attack her, hopped a passenger train, killed the ticket-lady, spun herself into a gooey coccoon; and entered adulthood like any other citizen. Now on the loose, SIL is being tracked by a team of scientists (Kingsley, Alfred "Doc Oc" Molina, and Marg "CSI" Helgenberger), an empath (Forest Whitaker), and a government "exterminator" (Michael "Kill Bill" Madsen). SIL does whatever it takes to survive and mate, dispatching many unsuspecting males and females in the process! Henstridge is to SPECIES what Arny is to THE TERMINATOR. She is driven toward a goal and will let nothing stand in her way. Gorey but intelligent, I liked this one a lot. Check it out..."
Trevor Adams | Montreal, Canada | 12/14/2007
(2 out of 5 stars)
"Species has undergone so many VHS/DVD releases, repackaging ... that it's really hard to arrive at a decent opinion on this Blu-ray release.
The very same weakly-acted alien story that played in theatres presents itself on this Blu-ray release. The transfer, however ... is almost embarrassing. I've been treated to some sweet Blu-ray transfers (Ratatouille, Pirates 3, and 300, to name a few) and this, my friends, is not one of them. When the screen should be black, it's gray and splotchy. Compression artifacts spoil the image throughout the film. The audio is nothing to write home (or to Amazon) about. This is one generic, zero-effort transfer and I hope to never see this bland of a transfer again on Blu. The film is not unwatchable, mind you ... it just seems like it's the DVD, blown up to 1080p. That's not my idea of high-definition.
My opinion: Stick to new Blu releases only ... or releases of old films with some sort of indication on the box that the film has been remastered for high-definition.
So, keep your original DVD copy and spend your money on something else."