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Category:    Home > Reviews > Animation > Videogames > Action > Fantasy > Battles > Halo: Nightfall (2014/Microsoft Blu-ray)

Halo: Nightfall (2014/Microsoft Blu-ray)

Picture: B+ Sound: A- Extras: B Film: B-

Survival is a Choice.

Halo is without question of the most popular video game titles in modern history, so it's no surprise that Microsoft Studios decided to come out with this live action webseries, produced by Ridley Scott and Scott Free Productions, as one of their first efforts together. The film is shot well and the digital effects aren't terrible, but will you be lost if you don't play the game? Not necessarily, but you will probably get a lot more out of it.

Serving as an origin story for Agent Locke, a secondary playable character in Halo 5: Guardians, Nightfall is intended to connect the stories of Halo 4 and Guardians. An ONI unit under Locke's command is deployed on the distant human Outer Colony of Sedra to investigate terrorist activity. Sedra is described as a backwater world harboring a disdain for the Unified Earth Government and the UNSC. During their investigation, a Sedran city is attacked by a Sangheili terrorist wielding a biological weapon that only affects humans.

Locke's team is forced to work together with Sedran Colonial Guard commander Randall Aiken and his troops to track down the origin of the bioweapon. During their search, the unit is drawn to a partially intact section of Installation 04, the Halo ringworld destroyed by the Master Chief in the first Halo game. A grave threat present on the ancient construct soon turns the mission into a desperate fight for survival.

It reminds me of an upscale Sy-Fy Channel production. The costumes, production design, and overall scope is there, but the acting, long dialogue featuring heavy 'tech talk', and lack of name recognition hurts. I believe the plan is to make a TV series following this film, so hopefully they will get some B list celebrities. Call up The Rock or John Cena for the next one! Watching this makes me think of what could have been if Neil Blomkamp would have gotten to make his version of a Halo a few years back before he made District 9.

Presented in 1080p high definition with a 2.35:1 widescreen aspect ratio and an MPEG-4 AVC codec. The audio is a crystal clear, lossless DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 track and lossy, lesser Dolby Digital 5.1 in various languages. The presentation is really nice on this disc! Incredible sound and the details on the characters don't leave much to be desired. Very sharp and nice work here.

If you are a fan of Halo then I would say check this film out. It's nothing too amazing but it could have been far worse. Decent production design helps but all in all I crave a better cast.

- James Harland Lockhart V



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