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TV show review: CONTINUUM season 4

Blu-ray review by David Blackwell

DETAILS:  98 minutes, two featurettes, photo gallery, theatrical trailer
VIDEO:  1.78:1 (Anamorphic Widescreen) 1080p High Definition
AUDIO:  English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio
Subtitles:  English SDH, Spanish

STUDIO:  Magnet Releasing/ Magnolia Home Entertainment/ Fotenay Films, Ltd/ Bennett Robbins Productions/ Emmett Furla Films
RELEASE DATE:  5-8-2012

PLAYBACK is a mildly entertaining horror movie with a good mythology to it only to devolve into a below average ending and being left with the characters you care for the least while the most interesting ones are killed.   However, I do say overall the characters aren't very interesting at all and even Christian Slater feels like he is phoning in his role as the sleazy cop.    PLAYBACK showed promise and all it is worth is a rainy day rental.

If you care about watching this mild time waster, it is about Julian and his group of his teenage friends (all played by actors in their twenties) investigating and making a short film (for their journalism class) about teenager Harlan Diehl who murdered his entire family in 1994.  Julian's mom (a police officer who was at the crime scene of the murders) wants him to stop digging into the case.   Helping the teenagers is misfit Riley (who works at a local TV station archiving old footage).  Soon Riley is possessed by something he saw in an old TV news video from the Harlan Diehl crime scene.  Julian digs even deeper and finds out Harlan's grandfather is the mysterious Louis Le Prince, the supposed real father of motion pictures who made a two second film of his family (who mysteriously died soon after the short film was made).

PLAYBACK has some interesting ideas that descends into the usual stale cliches of teenagers getting killed, some nudity, and a creepy perv of a police officer (who buys girl's locker room footage from Riley).   To say this film is a series of missed opportunities in the script writing department is a big understatement.   At least Michael Nickel's directing is better than his script.   I just wished he did more with a movie that could have been more than a derivative B movie horror kitsch.

The Behind-The Scenes featurette looks at the filming of a few scenes while the HDNet: A LOOK AT PLAYBACK is an interview with writer/ director Michael A Nickels.  Rounding out the extras are the theatrical trailer, a photo gallery, and previews for other Magnolia Home Entertainment releases.

FINAL ANALYSIS:  PLAYBACK has some interesting ideas only to have a poor script that makes poor use of the actors and the directions the story could have explored.   Watch if you have nothing better to rent.

this review is (c)5-8-2012 David Blackwell and cannot be reprinted without permission.  send all comments to feedback@enterline-media.com