Fulvue Drive-In.com
Current Reviews
In Stores Soon
In Stores Now
DVD Reviews, SACD Reviews Essays Interviews Contact Us Meet the Staff
An Explanation of Our Rating System Search  
Category:    Home > Reviews > Animation > Feature > Video Game > Science Fiction > Computer Graphics > Final Fantasy: The Spirit Within (Blu-ray)

Final Fantasy: The Spirit Within (Blu-ray)


Picture: B     Sound: B+     Extras: D     Feature: D



When Final Fantasy: The Spirit Within (2001) arrived with little fanfare and I heard about its insanely high budget, I knew there was trouble.  Sony was hoping for a big high-tech entry into the CG animated feature field with the gloss of a video game connection.  Instead, it was “game over” as this mess hit theaters and bombed.  Alien spirits have invaded earth in 2065 and only a brilliant scientist might be able to stop them.  Unfortunately, somebody should have stopped this project from being greenlighted as soon as the first CG footage arrived half-stillborn.


Even with big name voice talent like Donald Sutherland, Ving Rhames, Steve Buscemi, James Woods, Keith David and others, it was more than dated on arrival then and has not aged well at all since.  Even fans of the anthology series were not too impressed and it rightly continues to be a money-loser.  I forgot how bad this really was accompanied by the desire to fall asleep as I almost did in the cineplex only two months before 9/11.  Only that nightmare made most forget this turkey as it evaporated form theaters and memory.


The 1080p 1.85 X 1 digital High Definition image is as dull and computer memory challenged as I remembered in the 35mm print, but worse, though some improvement in color can be seen since this is in its own digital realm.  The nearly $200 Million they sunk into this had to go somewhere.  However, when all is said and done, this looks like a death-worship version of Fisher Price meets Playmobile.  The PCM 16/48 5.1 mix is better than the Dolby Digital 5.1 options as expected and the mix has its moments.  This was originally a Sony Dynamic Digital Sound (SDDS) 7.1 release and is the one thing that can hold up.  However, some of the dialogue is recorded oddly, making this an unintended howler at times.


Extras run on as much as the feature including two audio commentaries, interactive making of piece, the original opening, character profiles, vehicle scale comparison, trailer exploration feature, five other pieces and joke outtakes.


However, I have seen other entries in the franchise and was hardly more impressed, which was not so hard.  Those entries include:


Final Fantasy Unlimited – Phase Six (Animé TV)



Final Fantasy VII – Advent Children: Limited Edition Collector’s Series




The later was also CG and much better by default.  The Blu-ray is only for the ultra-curious.



-   Nicholas Sheffo


 Copyright © MMIII through MMX fulvuedrive-in.com