Stargate (film)

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Name: Stargate
Abbreviation(s):
Creator: Dean Devlin & Roland Emmerich
Date(s): 1994
Medium: film
Country of Origin: US
External Links: IMDB
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Plot Summary

Linguistic archaeologist Daniel Jackson (played by James Spader) and Air Force colonel Jack O'Neil (Kurt Russell) are brought together when Jackson is hired by the Air Force to help translate the symbols on an artifact recovered decades earlier from Egypt. He succeeds, and the artifact turns out to be a stargate, a device that allows direct, nearly instantaneous travel between worlds by creating wormholes that connect one stargate to another. With a small team, they travel through the stargate and find humans living on another world, enslaved to an alien being inhabiting a human body and calling himself Ra. The team clashes with Ra when he realizes they have more advanced tech than the locals. When he captures their nuke (brought in case of hostile aliens who could threaten Earth), the team foments rebellion among the locals, and they manage to overthrow Ra, blowing up his ship with him aboard. O'Neil returns to Earth, but Jackson remains behind to marry Shau'ri, the headman's daughter.

Stargate Fandom

The movie never developed a fandom of its own, but it spawned a spinoff TV show in 1997, Stargate SG-1, which had a large fan base, ran for ten full seasons, and produced two direct-to-DVD movies. In 2004, the show spawned a spinoff of its own, Stargate Atlantis, also with a large fan base, which ran for five seasons. The most recent addition to the Gateverse is the upcoming Stargate: Universe, which is not a direct spinoff of either SG1 or SGA, but builds on the universe canon that has developed in both shows over the years.

There was also a short-lived animated spinoff of Stargate SG-1, Stargate Infinity, but it's not considered part of the Gateverse.

The pilot episode of Stargate SG-1 is a direct sequel to the movie and picks up roughly a year after the movie's end, with O'Neill (spelled differently in the series) returning to Abydos to retrieve Jackson after a different alien, similar to Ra, appears on Earth. The movie's canon is largely adhered to in the series, with only a few changes.

Only two actors from the movie made the switch to the show: Erick Avari, who played Kasuf, and Alexis Cruz, who played Skaara.

A 1995 Review by Marion Zimmer Bradley

An excerpt:
The action was fast and noisy, more so that I would have liked, but then I'm from an older generation accumstomed to a slower pace. The rest of the audience (young and male, from the sound of it) seemed to like it.

I am not sure I would advise that you see the film with companions like my staff -- it tends to impdede one's suspension of disbelief and ability simply to enjoy the film without analysis (and running comentary). Raul noted that the troops, all American GIs, were armed in the main with general issue German armament. He assured me that the H&K 93 and the MP5 (whatever those are...) are top-of-the-line weapons, so the intent may have been to show that the soldiers were an elite unit armed with the very best weapons available. I found one of the protagonists (a young scholar named Daniel, who seemed a combination of Indiana Jones and Dagwood Bumstead) to be a likable schlep. Lisa, however, noted that while such a scholar may safely be counted on to leave behind his head if it weren't already attached, he would not leave his stash of books and papers being buried in a sand dune while he went chasing off after a strange-looking beast in the middle of the desert. She also noted that the "Eye Of Ra" in the movie is really the "Eye Of Horus."

Even so, both Lisa [1] and Raul seemed to enjoy the film, and even went to see it again. And it reminded me of the classic science fiction films of my youth (Flash Gordon, Buck Rogers, et al.) updated to the nineties. This movie is a good one of the Fantasy/Action-Adventure type, and should appeal to the devotees of that genre. [2]

References

  1. Elisabeth Waters?
  2. Stargate; WebCite