Ghost Recon Alpha [Blu-ray]
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Tom Clancy?S Ghost Recon Alpha ~ Tom Clancy?S Ghost Recon Alpha
Top Customer Reviews
What a total rip off.
Really sets the mood the Tom Clancy Ghost Recon Future Soldier game.
Sure hope the price is correctly adjusted. Doesn't make sense for the difference between the two.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Now, a little back history here ...
As best as I understand it, Ubisoft launched the Tom Clancy Ghost Recon brand back in 2001, and it boasts a series of video games in and around the fictional military universe created by the author himself. From what I learned from the `making of' featurette on the disc, Ghost Recon crosses into several entertainment platforms - games, films, and books - and capitalizes specifically on the characters and situations created by Mr. Clancy in delivering high suspense military adventures, all set against a backdrop of international intrigue. These soldiers are part-combat-specialists, part-special-ops-soldiers, as well as part-spies, and they're equipped with only the best state-of-the-art equipment that the military has to offer.
As for Alpha's story?
Operatives within the U.S. intelligence community have finally closed in on Chevchenko, a villain involved with all measures of international badness. The Ghost team is sent in to stop the delivery of Bulava class nuclear weapon. The stakes are high, but the team will stop at nothing to keep America safe from nuclear terrorism. Specifically, ALPHA's story serves as a prequel to the `Future Soldier' game.
To put it bluntly, this 25-minute film contains as much action as some full features I've seen. And I'm not talking low-brow guns'n'guts action: I'm talking cream-of-the-crop elite military engagements here. Ubisoft spared no expense in crafting this tense little flick, bringing in some behind-the-scenes talent who contributed to such features as CHILDREN OF MEN, BLACK HAWK DOWN, and THE BOURNE ULTIMATUM. Additionally, they brought in Military Weapons Specialist Harry Humphries (I've heard of Humphries contributions to other films, and he's a bit of a Hollywood legend), who's served as a consultant to such films as TRANSFORMERS, IRON MAN, and THOR. I hated hated hated for this to end - though I suspected it would when I realized it was, essentially, an elongated set-up for a game - but what was delivered was terrific.
And, yes, maybe (just maybe) this will infuriate folks who hate being mildly `spoiled' - so, if you're inclined, then look away, brave reader, look away - but it all ends on a cliffhanger. That's right! It doesn't exactly wrap itself up all neatly in one 25-minute package because it's a set-up for the game. It may help to think of it as one long commercial - not that there's anything wrong with it - because that's what you get: a hugely successful tease for what I have no doubt will be a hugely successful video game if the film is any indication.
The film is a joint production of Ubisoft Entertainment and Little Minx (a subsidiary of Ridley Scott & Associates) along with Flatiron Film Company. You wouldn't believe it's a short film (and you certainly wouldn't want it to end!) because everything about it is absolutely top notch. Video production is exceptional; audio production is terrific; and immeasurable great detail has done into every aspect consistently. When these folks say "feature film," they mean it. The disc comes with a making-of featurette (at 28 minutes, it's actually longer than the film itself, and it's entirely worth it to see what lengths they went to in putting all of this together) and a single preview that apparently screened at the 2010 Comic-Con.
HIGHEST RECOMMENDATION with only the single reservation that - as I've already said - I didn't want it to end. It's a military techno-thriller done by folks who clearly know what that means.
In the interests of fairness, I'm pleased to disclose that the fine folks at New Video graciously provided me an advance screener DVD of TOM CLANCY'S GHOST RECON: ALPHA for the expressed purposes of completing this review.
Here's what's included:
1) A 20 minute "Alpha" movie: I have sampled a number of these game tie-in movies/DVDs. Without a doubt, the "Alpha" film is among the best in technical presentation. The plotting of this piece, which stands as a prequel to the new game, has the Ghost team tracking down their arch-nemesis Chevchenko. As a weapons deal is taking place at an abandoned outpost, all types of mayhem breaks loose which begins an exquisitely choreographed battle sequence. Although dynamic, none of the characters has been developed (hey, it's only 20 minutes) so it may lack dramatic impact but it makes up for it in visual flair! This live action footage is feature film quality, the effects are good, and I absolutely loved this brief bit of movie making. As I said, had it been a game supplement--I'd have given it the highest marks imaginable. But is it worth the current (subject to change, non-discounted) suggested selling price of 14.95? It makes it a harder recommendation.
2) A 28 minute "Making-of" featurette: At first, I assumed this might also discuss the upcoming game. But no, it is only about the 20 minute film. I like this behind-the-scenes kind of stuff, but it's a full third longer than the actual movie!
3) A 1 minute trailer of the film.
In essence, this DVD purchase offers the consumer NOTHING except this 20 minute movie. Most other tie-in products to games offer significantly more game extras, back stories, featurettes, etc.. This one doesn't even mention the game or, indeed, the entire series. It's quite odd, because it would have been very simple to use existing material to make this far more collectable and valuable. So, as much as I loved "Alpha," I think that overall this was a missed opportunity to provide something even more special to longtime fans. Recommended, but know you are only getting a tiny (but great) action sequence. KGHarris, 5/12.