Robotech: The Shadow Chronicles (Blu-ray)/Official sountrack (CD)The latest in the long running Robotech saga has been finally released on Blu-Ray for us to enjoy in all its digital glory. And yes, it does not take the most anal anime fan to tell it makes a huge difference. On a good screen much of its looks as real as the best in high budget space sagas like Star Wars. And there is a touch of Star Wars about the place both as result of the frankly stunning soundtrack with a heavy nod to John William’s orchestric genius. Plus the fact that Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker in SW: Ep 4-6) voices one of the major characters in the movie.The plot on the other hand has a strong whiff of Babylon 5 about it, with a touch of Battlestar Gallactic thrown in for good measure. Those who are fans of the space epic will find nods to lots of classics of the genre. That is not to say the movie comes across as merely a compilation of these prior epics cobbled together. Its stays true to the Robotech universe and tries to explain how man got into the mess the humans finds themselves in as the movie starts.As with any space epic there is lashings of betrayal, skullduggery and seething lust that goes unabated because they are stuck in the middle of a massive intergalactic war. There is quite a funny bit of geek love as a scientist, with less than social skills, finds himself all gaga over a female humanoid robot, who can sing. She has some dodgy DNA, but no matter he still is all atwitter about her when she is on screen.Action fans will have plenty to please them with some epic battles scenes between the space mechs and the two different enemies they face. This being a Blu-ray release there are oodles of extras. And by oodles I mean loads, over 95 minutes of them to be exact. There are outtakes, deleted/altered scenes, commentary, trailers and all manner of nerdy specifics for the Robotech uber-fan. I really can’t find any fault with this release. Ok, one minor point, the on-screen menus can be a bit of a pain to navigate through if you have a smaller flat screen television. Its PG rated and has one oddles of awards at the various animation festivals around the place. If you are or have been a Robotech fan then you should pick his up. If you like an epic space opera with impressive graphics and some cracking good battles then you should pick this up.

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