Friday, September 16, 2016

ANI-MOVIES, *Dead Space: Downfall

There were a few direct-to-video movies in the late 00's that were done as vehicles for a popular video game, usually for an upcoming release. Some of which like Halo and Mass Effect got turned into an actual anime. Dead Space: Downfall was produced as lead in to the first video game, and one of the first titles to begin this trend. Directed by Chuck Patton who also worked on the Spawn cartoon, this was developed by Film Roman, and the games creators, Electronic Arts.

Set centuries from now, mankind is under a new religion called Unitology after an alien artifact was located on Earth. Sometime later, a similar one known as the Marker(called the "Red Marker" in game canon)is found on another planet, so the the Unitology church sends a ship to bring it back to Earth. A comic book mini-series released prior to this showed how the space colony where the Marker was bring kept slowly descended into madness. The Ishimura starship shows up and takes possession of the Marker, but unleashes a mad plague upon the crew where the start turning into mutated space zombies called Necromorphs. Everyone on board eventually gets killed by the Necromorphs, or from each other's madness. The last survivor is the movies main heroine Alissa who is the head of security. She manages to send a special warning on a beacon into space, but along with herself dying of asphyxiation. This ends with the first games hero boarding the Ishimura.

Downfall works as a fairly good sci-fi horror movie in its own right, without having to have been exposed to any other Dead Space media. It does has some pretty good animation, and doesn't hold back on the gore. There's some good performances by voice actors like Jim Cummings, Kevin Michael Richardson, and Bruce Boxleitner, especially in the scenes highlighting the crew's fall into insanity. It's as good as we're probably going to get to an animated version of Aliens, so give it a watch.

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