×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Battlestar Galactica: Razor

Continuing to exhibit an inventive flair for marketing as well as storytelling, "Battlestar Galactica" jumps into the fall with this two-hour movie -- teased by a string of two-minute "minisodes," and due for a Nov. 12 theatrical premiere in selected cities -- before the final season begins in earnest next year.

Continuing to exhibit an inventive flair for marketing as well as storytelling, “Battlestar Galactica” jumps into the fall with this two-hour movie — teased by a string of two-minute “minisodes,” and due for a Nov. 12 theatrical premiere in selected cities — before the final season begins in earnest next year. As always, “Razor” excels at couching the grim sci-fi drama in present-day moral choices, from sacrificing innocents in time of war to the efficacy of torture. Prominently featuring supporting and guest players, the project deftly stands on its own while still weaving in the show’s dense “Who’s a Cylon?” mythology.

Indeed, “Razor” spans an especially ambitious span of time, jumping back to the initial Cylon attack and its impact on the Battlestar Pegasus as well as its Adm. Helena Cain and newly arrived officer Kendra Shaw (guests Michelle Forbes and Stephanie Jacobsen, respectively).

Back in the present, Pegasus has a new commander — Lee Adama (Jamie Bamber), the son of Galactica chief William Adama (Edward James Olmos) — that taps the troubled, drug-using Shaw as his second in command. That leads to flashbacks regarding the brutal tactics that Cain employed with her ship under siege, building toward a new mission potentially offering the young officer — who has both struggled with those choices and internalized them — a shot at redemption.

As for that new mission, as intricately woven by writer Michael Taylor and director Felix Alcala, it’s rooted in an old threat, one that allows for a separate flashback presenting the young Adama (Nico Cortez) over 40 years ago, when the Cylons and humans first went at it.

Frankly, it’s around here that any casual viewer could easily throw up their hands, but the focal point of Shaw’s story — nicely played by Jacobsen — has the feel of one of those old-time “Star Trek” or even “Bonanza” episodes, where a guest star allowed much of the cast to take a bit of a siesta. That said, there are still knowing flourishes for the hard-core zombies, including the chance to see Cylon infiltrator No. Six (Tricia Helfer) sporting a nifty new hairdo.

“Galactica” has been a pleasant surprise from the get-go, reimagining the fluffy ’70s incarnation into a probing examination of ethics, mistrust and values that cleverly parallels a post-Sept. 11 age. With its innovative web components, minisodes and now “Razor’s” theatrical play, the efforts to capitalize on the zealous sci-fi fan base have been equally impressive — the ultimate corporate good soldier, quietly helping NBC Universal in the quest to navigate toward its own brave new world.

Battlestar Galactica: Razor

Sci Fi Channel, Sat. Nov. 24, 9 p.m.

Production: Filmed in Vancouver by Universal Media Studios. Executive producers, Ronald D. Moore, David Eick; co-executive producers, Mark Verheiden, Michael Angeli, Michael Taylor, Jane Espenson; supervising producers, Harvey Frand, David Weddle, Bradley Thompson; producers, Michael Rymer, Ron French; director, Felix Alcala; writer, Taylor.

Crew: Camera, Stephen McNutt; production design, Richard Hudolin; editor, Tim Kenzy. Running Time: 120 MIN.

More TV

  • "Pongo Pygmaeus and a Culture that

    TV Ratings: 'Young Sheldon' Grows to Season High

    “Young Sheldon” ticked up to a season high rating on Thursday night. The “Big Bang Theory” spinoff scored a 1.2 rating among adults 18-49, and was watched by just under 9 million total viewers, also a high for season 3 to date. However, it still lost out to “Grey’s Anatomy” for the top scripted show [...]

  • Morning Show Apple

    'The Morning Show' Boss on How Real-Life Politics Will Influence Season 2

    Apple TV Plus just gave official renewals to four of the shows that launched with the new streaming service last week, but the second season of “The Morning Show” has already been well underway for quite some time: The Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon-starrer was a two-season order right out of the gate. Now, it [...]

  • Shari Redstone: ViacomCBS 'Can Compete With

    Shari Redstone: ViacomCBS 'Can Compete With the Best of Them'

    Shari Redstone is emphatic: ViacomCBS has plenty of resources and the scale to compete in the new world order for media giants. “We absolutely have enough scale,” Redstone said Friday morning during her Q&A held as part of the Paley Center for Media’s  International Council Summit in New York. “We have an incredible library. We [...]

  • INVISIBLE HEROES

    International TV Newswire: Spanish Sanctions, Topic Buys, Intaglio’s Originals

    In this week’s International TV Newswire, major Spanish broadcasters get stung for anti-competitive practices, Intaglio preps two new English-language series out of Berlin, A+E Networks EMEA’s executive team is announced, Topic picks up a trio of Eccho Rights Scandinavian series and “Finding Joy” gets a second season on RTÉ and Acorn TV. CNMC Sanctions Mediaset [...]

  • Gary OldmanDeadline Hollywood Presents THE CONTENDERS

    Gary Oldman to Star in Drama Series 'Slow Horses' at Apple

    Gary Oldman will star in a small screen adaptation of Mick Herron’s Slough House books at Apple, Variety has learned. Titled “Slow Horses” after the first novel in the series, the show follows a team of British intelligence agents who serve in a dumping ground department of MI5 – Slough House. Oldman will star as [...]

  • Germany's Leonine Buys 'Dark' and '4

    German Indie Studio Leonine Buys 'Dark' and '4 Blocks' Producer W&B TV

    Leonine has acquired “Dark” producer W&B TV from Endemol Shine. Fledgling German studio Leonine had already bought Wiedemann & Berg Film and established itself as a Munich-based movies, TV, and digital production and distribution group. It has now added the W&B TV unit to its roster. The production company is behind several big German dramas [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content