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Friday, 01 September 2006 |  Written by Bill Warren  | 
Species Even though “Species” is such an “Alien” knockoff that the creatures were designed by “Alien”’s H.R. Giger, it’s one of the better such imitations that followed in the wake of Ridley Scott’s scary movie. This time, the alien menace is on Earth, a human-alien hybrid with an ingrained compulsion to mate as soon as possible. When she looks human, she looks sensational—no wonder, she’s played by striking, statuesque Nastasha Henstridge, making her movie debut—but when she’s not, she’s a sleek, pinkish-gray, elegant but monstrous-looking predator with fangs, claws, and extendable nipples. “Species” was one of the first movies in the wake of precedent-setting “Jurassic Park” to make extensive use of computer graphic special effects, and evidently the first to use performance-capture technology. That’s the steadily-improving technique of attaching highlights to the bodies and limbs of actors—often little red dots—which are registered by a computer and used to drive figures otherwise created in the digital realm. ...
Editor's rating: 
Tuesday, 01 August 2006 |  Written by Bill Warren  | 
Ultraviolet As high-definition DVDs roll out in the form of Blu-Ray discs and the incompatible HD DVD, some studios show little care in selecting what films are released in this dazzling format. So far, it seems Columbia/Sony is just grabbing the last group of theatrical releases, or films like “50 First Dates” that already did well on standard DVD. “Ultraviolet” is a good example in several ways. It’s a lousy movie, no question of that, even though the usually-appealing Milla Jovovich is the star. Perhaps her career has been derailed by her starring role in the wretched “Resident Evil” series, because now she seems like Action Girl #1. “Ultraviolet” doesn’t require much of the acting abilities she displayed in “The Fifth Element” and “The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc.” On the other hand, those films also required her to be nimble and graceful, even while wearing a full suit of ...
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