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Stargate: The Ark Of Truth
cast: Michael Shanks, Amanda Tapping, Beau Bridges, Ben Browder, and Claudia Black

director: Robert C. Cooper

98 minutes (12) 2008
widescreen ratio 16:9
MGM DVD Region 2 retail

RATING: 8/10
reviewed by James A. Stewart
Desperate situation - check: impossible to find artefact and only days in which to find it - check: ultimate bad guys on your tail with the domination of an entire galaxy on their minds - check: collection of intrepid heroes intent on saving the universe from said baddies, just in time of course - check. Hell, it can only be Stargate SG-1!

After ten long and successful years, TV series SG-1 was axed. Hard as it was for many SF fans to take, it was gone, or so we thought. However, thankfully the purse holders saw fit to give us not one, but two, films to make up for it. These straight to DVD offerings will slake the thirst of the SG-1 fans like iced-tea on a warm summer day. The first, Ark Of Truth, wraps up the story of the Ori, those pesky other worldly religious zealots concerned with spreading 'Origin', their version of Christianity/ Islam/ Buddhism/ Judaism (delete as appropriate) - but it is their methods which are somewhat questionable.

Set just before the events of Stargate Atlantis season four, Ark Of Truth features the usual cast of Daniel Jackson (Michael Shanks), Vala (Claudia Black), Teal'c (Christopher Judge), Sam (Amanda Tapping), and Cam (Ben Browder) - but sadly no Richard Dean Anderson, but all is not lost as he has a prominent role in Continuum, the second of the films to be released this year.

The plot of Ark Of Truth is absurdly simple even by SG-1 standards. The team are searching for an ancient Alteran artefact that can defeat the Ori who are in town and want to destroy Earth. Meanwhile, the standard IOA agent is rather easy to spot; SG-1 is like a good bowl of broth - there are simple and yet key ingredients that give it a kick, think of the IOA agent as being a light seasoning. The chemistry between the cast members is, as usual, terrific. What is not to love? It is the adventure and action that makes SG-1 and not the formulaic storylines. There are those out these who may complain that this is a rush job and is no better than two episodes stuck onto DVD - however, this is way wide of the mark. Aficionados of SG-1 will love the in-jokes and references to items from earlier seasons.

As well as some cracking action there is a plethora of special features, including cast and director commentary, a Continuum featurette as well as prelude to the main feature which is especially useful for those who haven't seen all of season 10. This is an absolute must for fans of the show but casual observers will enjoy also. Ark Of Truth closes the Ori story wonderfully, and should satisfy those who were worried about being left hanging when season 10 was canned midway through. I don't want to spoil the ending so will refrain from revealing whether Carter, Jackson, Teal'c, Cam and Vala save the day or not...

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