• A Review Page For Those Movies You Watch At Home!

    Couch Potato Movie Reviews is, obviously, a blog that exclusively reviews movies. What makes this blog different is the fact that all of the films we are reviewing are all movies that are available on home movie rental companies such as Redbox, Netflix, Blockbuster, and your quickly disappearing neighborhood rental store. This blog is designed to take a more detailed look at those movies that either were sent straight to DVD, received a very limited release in the theaters, or were distributed through the art house or film festival circuit. We will also review those big Hollywood films, but only after they are available for home viewing.

    All the reviews are written by fans of the great art of film making rather than some newspaper reviewer or stuffy film student. We don’t know everything about film but we do know what we like, and we are more than happy to share our opinions with you. What you do with those opinions are totally up to you, although comments are welcome and encouraged.

    Each film review has a one to five star rating at the end of the critique. Here is what those star ratings mean for you couch potatoes:

    * * * * * : Five stars: go and buy this one, don’t just rent it!

    * * * * : Four stars: put this at the top of your rental list.

    * * * : Three stars: average, not bad just not great either.

    * * : Two stars: only rent if you have to see everything.

    * : One star: don’t waste your time with this.

Star Quest: The Odyssey

TITLE: Star Quest: The Odyssey

YEAR: 2009

GENRE: Science Fiction

It is one thing to make a film to honor a favorite movie or pay homage to the movie, but it is another to rip off many of the ideas from that admired franchise and obviously steal the ideas created by your predecessors for your own gain. For instance, Halloween has had many films made from its blueprints, some quite respectable and still relevant today (the Friday The 13th franchise being the main one) but most being nothing more than unmemorable dreck (Final Exam being a case in point). Stealing from an established franchise is the main sin of Star Quest: The Odyssey, in this case the sticky fingers are around the Star Trek empire.

In a distant future, humans and a half cyborg/half human special called the Krohn have ended a great war with the humans being victorious but at a heavy personal and financial price. As a result, Krohns and human are now uneasy allies. A couple Krohns are transported on a human space ship called the “Odyssey” with an all-human crew to a distant star to follow up with a human colony on a planet in that solar system. When arriving, the group discovers that the planet is being controlled by an ancient machine that is programmed to protect the inhabitants of the planet to the point of enslaving the populace within its walls. Other problems do rise, including a soon-to-explode super nova and one of the Krohn who decides it is his place to sabotage the mission and the hyper drive of the “Odyssey”.

Although there is some effort here to make the best film possible, Star Quest: The Odyssey never gets off the ground. The script is OK, but the storyline is noticeably stolen from the Star Trek franchise in between Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country and the beginning of “Star Trek: The Next Generation”. Some of the actor lines used in the film also hearken back to the days of Captain Kirk especially when the ship’s physician exclaims, “I’m a doctor, not a soldier!” The Krohn look suspiciously like Klingons with scrap computer parts strapped to their chests although to the film maker’s credit they did leave out the unmistakable face make-up. The acting in this film is pretty uninspired and wooden, especially the ship’s captain who in many scenes looks like he would rather be somewhere else and one of the Krohn who grunts, yells, and punches walls throughout the production. The actual space ship looks nice enough but in many cases the ship and the background stars do not synch up very well, showing an obvious amateurish nature of the production. Also, the ending screams potential sequel but is too abrupt and leaves the viewer hanging. On the positive, the costuming is not too bad for a low budget independent, the ship sets are acceptable, and female cast members Davina Joy and Katherine Stewart are better actors than the rest of the male-dominated cast.

There is an old saying that “imitation is the most sincere form of flattery,” but I am not sure if Gene Roddenberry would agree if he saw Star Quest: The Odyssey. I will give the film makers some credit for a noble effort, but the noticeable stealing of many Star Trek ideas and lines make Star Quest: The Odyssey more of a good joke than a serious, stand on its own production. There is nothing wrong with borrowing items here and there, but this film feels like a home invasion overall. Although they did make a valiant effort, I can not in good conscious recommend Star Quest: The Odyssey due to its apparent thievery of ideas and overall poor acting and direction.

* 1/2

–Mark

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