Stargate posterMonster not familiar wit Stargate series starring MacGyver and RuPaul so left somewhat confused by dis film dat be reminiscent of de old Crosby and Hope road movies – but wit more killing and androgyny.

Movie open in distant past where revival of de musical Hair get awaken while sleeping on a giant soundstage.  Wind blow, lights flash and one guy get up and start walking toward de source of de fooferah…

Upsy daisy!
Upsy daisy!

Suddenly, we in 1928 Egypt.  At site of big dig, archeologist’s daughter help herself (aka “steal”) a locket while her dad oversee discovery of a giant ring.  Let’s call it a stargate for now.

Suddenly, we in present day where archeologist’s daughter has blossomed into an old lady.  Monster know it be de archeologist’s daughter because she still wearing de pendant she borrowed (aka “stole”) from de dig site.  She peek in on speech given by kooky archeologist Dr. Daniel Jackson.  Speech not go over well and before you know it, room clear out faster den karaoke night when it Grover’s turn to sing.

Dr. Jackson offered a job translating ancient scribble-scrabble discovered at dat 1928 dig site.  He get to work at top secret Air Force base and, in no time, realizes scribble scrabble not language but constellations!  It aktually be an address.  But to where?!

Well, it turn out government have a stargate (dat giant ring dey find in de desert) and it a gateway to de other end of de known universe.  All dey have to do is input symbols and it spin like a rotary phone.  Daniel identify a symbol dat everyone assume be de final piece of de dialing sekwence.  Dey start dialing.  When dey get to six, Daniel told “Dis be as far as we have gotten.”  Really?  Why?  Dere be a limited number of symbols on dat gate. If you already got to six, what stop dem from running thru all remaining symbols?  Ah, mebbe t.v. series answer dis qwestion.

Scientists succeed in getting lock and creating shimmering grey puddle in gate dat resemble monster’s backyard pool after Snufflelupagus go for a dip.  Amazing!  What could like on de other side?  New worlds? New civilizations?  Breathable air?

Well, only one way to find out.  Send someone thru.  Or, not better yet, send a bunch of people thru!  Inkluding Dr. Jackson who, like most meek nerds, be fighting off sneezy allergy.  Allergy to what?  Air Force uniforms?

Leading de expedition to de other side be Colonel Jack O’Neill, a suicidal soldier who broken up over loss of his son.  How monster know dis?  Because in scene where he be introduced, he sitting in room, surrounded by pictures of his son, considering while he weigh his gun in his hand.  But how monster know for sure?  Because Air Force guys who visit him have conversation in deir car dat go someting like: “What de matter wit him?” “Oh, he all upset becuz his son be dead.”  Subtle, no?

Whoa.  Monster need a cool-down joint.
Whoa. Monster need a cool-down joint.

Jackson and soldiers step thru and go on crazy twist turny ride dat remind monster of last time he drop acid wit De Count.  Dey arrive on other side desert planet where dey meet natives mining minerals.  But for who?

Unfortunately, team not able to gate back.  Jackson diskover address back to Earth but last symbol missing.  And it impossible to dial witout final symbol.  Unless, of course, you try every limited symbol on de stargate – but who have time for dat?

De Original Odd Couple – if de stargate was aktually a time machine and dey went back to pre-1965 before Neil Simon wrote De Odd Couple.

Alien pyramid ship land under cover of sandstorm and capture Jackson and co.  Alien leader, who have taken over body of curious native we saw in opening scene, assume identity of sun god Ra.  He force natives to worship him.  And plan to get dem even more onside by forcing Dr. Jackson to kill O’Neill and de soldiers in front of big crowd.  How, exaktly, dis terruble plan will help Ra in any way be never explained. Mebbe t.v. seris answer dis qwestion.

Ra and Friends.  New on Cartoon Network!
Ra and Friends. New on Cartoon Network!

If nothing else, Ra’s bad judgement allow Jackson to turn tables on him and eskape wit soldiers and den, wit help of natives, mount attack on pyramid ship.

Jackson’s girlfriend get killed but, luckily, Ra have a revita-coffin on his ship dat make dead people alive again.  Why?  Becuz it cool?  Mebbe. Daniel transport him and gal up to ship using weird ring technology while O’Neill fight one of Ra’s bodyguards down below.

Meanwhile, bomb dat O’Neill brought wit him be turned into SUPERbomb by Ra who intend to send it thru de stargate back to Earth.  It countdown as –

On ship, Daniel bring his gal back to life, but get caught by Ra who proceed to torture him wit glowey hand device.

O’Neill kill Ra’s guard by knocking him onto platform and initiating ring technology dat decapitate him and send his head back up to ship –

COINCIDENTALLY saving Daniel and his gal who just HAPPEN to be lying on the ring platform up on de ship.

But it too late to turn off bomb.  And ship start taking off.  What to do?  What to do?!

Suddenly, O’Neill and Jackson arrive at idea.  Presumably dey heard audience screaming obvious solution to dem from five minutes earlier. Dey transport bomb up to Ra’s ship.  It explode!

Celebration!  Jackson get de girl!  O’Neill not feeling so suicidal! Showtime green light t.v. series!

Verdikt: Interesting premise.  Yep, dat premise pretty interesting.

Rating: 7 chocolate chippee cookies.

36 thoughts on “July 29, 2013: Our Movie of the Week Club reconvenes! Cookie Monster reviews Stargate!

  1. First…I LOVED this movie! It is the foundation for so much of what we fans love about the Stargate franchises. Viveca Linfors was great as the adult Catherine. Even in this movie, they started to
    mispronounce the name Sha’uri to Sha’re. The special effects were state of the art when the movie was released and just fabulous and still fabulous each time I watch this. Oh, Joe, if they still have the re-vita-coffin box, I need it.

    There were a few puzzlers which do not really need definition – they just stood out as being “odd.” Like a plot or story gap. But since we are “reviewing,” I guess they can surface for discussion.

    1. On all the scenes of the stone face of Ra…the lighting makes it look like it is “crossed eyed.”
    2. Katerina, Professor Langford’s daughter, “just picks up” the gold necklace of the eye of Ra. Guess it did not matter that she “took” a potentially priceless artifact from the dig.
    3. Hilarious when Daniel is taken to the car, Major Kowolski, who was going to “watch” his bags, just leaves it in the rain.
    4. Daniel is “just Daniel” as he opens the envelope and stands in the rain.
    5. Every time there was a “new or different” language, it was almost always, “..form of hiradic or cunneaform.” Then, berber, Chadic, or hiradic….Spelling.
    6. At the initial briefing, one of the officers says, we have to dial home in order to come home. This was odd in that this is the first time they made the gate work…so how did he know?. Then Ferretti says, “ it doesn’t work that way,” when Jackson says, earth will dial so they can go home.
    A bit of a flaw…in that at that time they did not know one would be vaporized in the gate’s backwash or going thru the gate the wrong way.

    AND…Actually, when did they test, going thru the gate the wrong way? Don’t remember that from any of the series. But we did see arms and legs get vaporized when the gate opened.

    7. The original goauld are little scrawny people with piranha teeth not the swimming larvae that we have come to know.

    Great movie…Great series….Great franchise…Great people making it all happen!

    Rating – 12 Macarons

  2. Next year marks the 20th anniversary of the film too!

    Too funny you posted this today Joe! I just got back fro mailbox and 5 new hot out of the mold “Eye of Ra Pendants” arrived just in time for SHORELEAVE in Maryland this weekend. Super excited to see Amanda again, looks like we might be having coffee Sunday AM before she gets too busy!

    Anyone is interested, these pendants are made by good friend mine in the Netherlands and it takes him about 6 hours a piece to make and are true masterpiece~! The process can be seen here…


  3. “When dey get to six, Daniel told “Dis be as far as we have gotten.” Really? Why? Dere be a limited number of symbols on dat gate. If you already got to six, what stop dem from running thru all remaining symbols?”


    I always wondered that. Anyway…

    I loved the fact that even though they only went to one world in the movie, the series was based on the fact that the stargate could go to other worlds.

  4. Well reviewed, I particularly liked your “audience screaming” comment. I always hate to see a drawn out time from when the viewers see a solution to a problem until when the characters see it. It makes the characters seem dumb. And this is one of the better examples of that.

  5. Cookie Monster: FYI, you misspelled O’Neil all through your review. Remember, the guy with one “L”, not very funny… two L’s, funny.

  6. Oh come on, only 7 cookies? What about the great scenes with Kasuf and Skaara, the Snuffleuupagus thingies, the candy bars? I LOVE those, and I love the scene where Jackson gets dragged by one. 🙂 You’ve got to give it an extra cookie for that, Cookie. 🙂

  7. Awesome movie, awesome premise, but they just glossed over the question of what happens if you dial in different coordinates. I guess you need a feature film to wrap-up nice and neat.

    For the longest time, I watched this movie over and over. I’d see the series on Showtime when I was flipping through channels, but refused to watch because I thought it would ruin the movie for me.

  8. Given that this movie was the inspiration for the best. TV. series. EVER, it’s pretty hard to give it any kind of objective review. It’s impossible to view it now without being in the context of all that was to come after. This is probably my fourth or fifth time watching this movie (maybe more) and I still quite enjoy it, even if there are a few inconsistencies with the TV franchise. It is one of the rare cases though, where the TV show was better (by far) than the movie.

    There were a few things that I really liked – the first appearance of the gate as it’s raised in Giza is still exciting. During Daniel’s presentation near the beginning, someone asks if the pyramids were built by “men from Atlantis”. Unintentional I suppose, but still classic. I still love the idea and the visuals of the ring transporter. And of course, Daniel’s first death! The start of a long and storied tradition. Also, the Jaffa were apparently always terrible shots.
    I’m quite amazed at how well Michael Shanks captured the mannerisms of Spader’s Daniel from this movie.

    As I mentioned, there were of course several inconsistencies with the TV series, I expect to give writers much more room to actually fill out the Stargate universe. For example, Abydos being on the “other side of the known universe.” Not to much to expand on from there! Also, the idea of the Goa’uld as presented here doesn’t leave a lot of room to grow.

    I guess the biggest issue I had with the movie, and I thought this even the first time I saw it, is that it’s pretty slow paced, especially in the middle after they arrive at the planet. SG1 was able to fit more story than that into a 42 minute time frame! It’s only as the team starts to storm the pyramid again do things pick up.

    Also, why did Ra spend so much time just talking about sending the bomb to Earth? It seemed to sit around for a long time. All talk, no action, those Goa’uld! Typically dramatic. Except in this case, with not quite as much drama.

    And yes, why did Ra bother resurrecting Daniel with the sarcophagus just to have him kill the others to show how Ra is their god? Wouldn’t killing them himself have more effect? Or did he think that by controlling Daniel it would show how much power he had? But, anyone can make that kind of threat – it wouldn’t prove you were a god. Also, what was he going to do with Daniel afterward? That whole part didn’t really make sense to me, either. It’s one of those, “let’s make the characters do something completely stupid in order to set up for this plot point that we’ve already determined has to happen” kind of things. Argh.

    I did always wonder how even after two years they didn’t notice that the symbols on the cartouche matched up with the symbols on the gate (even if they didn’t recognize them as constellations) and that the seventh symbol COULD HAVE been the one at the bottom that kind of looked like one on the gate. It’s clear Samantha Carter was not there yet! I suppose since they were thinking it was an instruction of some kind, they did not seem to have known that it was actually the address in order to try the last symbol randomly. (Although, Catherine says that’s “as far as they’ve ever been able to get.” So they at that point DID know that it was an address. Ugh.)

    Anyway, like I say, I love this movie if nothing else for the fact that it spawned so many years of great television. I think I may have to go watch “Children of the Gods” tonight…

    @Sylvia – I always just presumed that they had somehow figured out the mechanics of how the gate worked, but just didn’t know the addressing scheme, which would explain how they knew they had to dial back from their location. I know it’s not really stated, but.. *shrugs* Also, wasn’t it mentioned somewhere in the series if you went through the gate in the wrong direction you just stepped through to the other side? Maybe I’m imagining that.

  9. Inkluding Dr. Jackson who, like most meek nerds, be fighting off sneezy allergy. Allergy to what? Air Force uniforms?
    haircuts? i’m joking.

    Unfortunately, team not able to gate back. Jackson diskover address back to Earth but last symbol missing. And it impossible to dial witout final symbol. Unless, of course, you try every limited symbol on de stargate – but who have time for dat?
    but where would they end up? it’s not as though they could shout though the activated gate; “hello there! is this earth?”
    i’m pretty sure the whole MALP as a communication device thing came in the show.
    i just saw this movie not too long ago & can’t recall half of it.

  10. Hey everyone!

    Thanks to Line Noise, Sparrow_hawk, Tam Dixon, Deni, Airelle (hope your son’s kitty is going to be ok) for the kind words – much appreciated.

    An update on my cat Sasha (photo) – I got the pathology report yesterday. While the vet initially said the results were fairly good the pathologist said it was the very early stages of renal disease. This is to be expected in a cat this age. We’ve ordered in some special Royal Canin Renal food for her which I’ll pick up this evening. This will aid her kidney function. We’re going to start this before putting her on tablets etc.

    She’s usually pretty good with Royal Canin so I’m hoping that this will be palatable enough for her and will help.

    She’s been quiet. Vet visits are always a big deal for her. She has White Coat Syndrome. Poor vet. I warn him every time, but she scratches him every time. He kindly clipped her nails. Mostly she’s just been sleeping on the couch.

    I’ll jump on later tonight and give my thoughts on Stargate the Movie.

    I hope everyone is well.

  11. @why did Ra bother resurrecting Daniel with the sarcophagus just to have him kill the others to show how Ra is their god?

    Personally I thought he was looking to make Jackson a slave of his or something. He knew he wasn’t military, and knew exactly the kind of person he was(In a way..), he maybe thought he could use him for some purpose.

  12. @archersangel: I think the dialed address would be invalid if the last symbol is not the point if origin, so only one *should* work. I think.

  13. I enjoyed this movie, it was easy to watch. and I do this lots of times. I was so glad to see the tv show come from the movie. I know you came in later on it Joe, but thanks for all the great entertainment your show(s) gave us.. I didnt really question it much, the differences, and I thought James Spader did a great job, in the character. Not really crazy about him in other shows, but this was good. Cookie did a swell job on the review as usual. Thank him for me, and give him some choc chip cookies for his stash and some of that milkshake you made on the video, he won’t be counting cookies after that, yum. Hope you are having smmmoooothe sails at your house. Have a pleasant evening.

  14. @gforce:

    I also thought, “why ship a DISASSEMBLED bomb with O’Neill?” Especially since the assembled bomb easily fit in the case that the disassembled bomb came from (it’s in the final shot when O’Neill closes the lid on the assembled bomb). I guess having O’Neill open the lid and inspect the bomb was too subtle for us viewers?

    Also, did anyone notice Richard Kind’s (Stargate Atlantis’ Lucius Lavin) as the professor in the control room?

  15. I’m like Das. This movie never could keep my attention. And it was on at least two times this week. (It was on yesterday and I still found better things to do.) Yet I would recommend it. It has Kurt Russell. The creator of Eye Candy. I’ve been watching his movies forever. (I’ve even seen Escape From New York several times for gosh sakes.) James Spader is totally cute. He’s getting to be an old geezer now. But WOW where this movie was taken…Stargate: SG1, Stargate Atlantis, and Stargate Universe. A billion times better than the movie. Great vision. Great television.

  16. I once said I didn’t comment for a long time because someone would say exactly what I was going to say. I just read what Sylvia wrote at the end of her comment:

    “Great movie…Great series….Great franchise…Great people making it all happen!

    Rating – 12 Macarons”

    Exactly what I was/did say! I was even going to give it a cookie rating. (a perfect 10) Spooky eh?

  17. @ maggiemayday and PBMom – I gave my street begger $20 as I drove by today. I couldn’t help it. He’s looking worse. He was sitting down and had a hard time getting up. I feel so sorry for him. I know, I know. That corner is getting pretty profitable for him. No wonder he keeps coming back.

  18. Personally, I enjoyed the movie. Yes, there were “Huh?” moments, but overall, it was entertaining. And I like Kurt Russell.

    I think the reason Ra revived Daniel, then set him up to kill the rest of his team, was that the Abydons (?) thought that, because they came from the pyramid, O’Neil et al. were “Gods” just as Ra was. Can’t have that. So, having Daniel kill the others was Ra’s way of showing the people of Abydos that these people were merely mortals and subject to Ra’s command.

    The delay on the bomb was too long, but, I suppose, was ultimately a plot device to allow the counter to run down to a point were Ra had no time to send it back. Otherwise, if O’Neil could have reset the timer to get the same result, he could also have defused the bomb.

    Cookie obviously knows about the TV series since he mentions a few times that maybe things get answered there. Alas, no.

    But, come on, Cookie. Only 7 chocolate chippie cookies? Okay, maybe 7. But there should also be three bonus chocolate chippie cookies: One for each of SG1, SGA, and SGU. And that makes a perfect 10.

  19. Ummm…Mr. Mallozzi…you and your agents might want/need to have a good
    look at this just announced news.

    “DarK Matter”…does it matter?

    An excerpt from the article linked to down below:
    A Sirius representative contacted Bell through social media a few months ago, leading to the formation of his show, “Art Bell’s Dark Matter.” He’ll talk about things like UFOs, ghosts, near-death experiences and weird aspects of science. He’ll do interviews and take calls from viewers.

    Radio’s Art Bell returning with Sirius XM show

  20. Besides being a scifi fan, I’ve always been an “archaeology” fan as well. Toss in childhood heart-throb Kurt, and I needed no other persuasion to buy expensive popcorn! — Although overall, the Movie turned out to be a “Love Child” of STAR WARS and RAIDERS of the LOST ARK, *WHAT* initially however “sold me” on the whole film [and later series], was Jackson’s very brief mention [during his seminar] about the Sphinx being OLDER than the Pyramids!! — A [geological] theory that is *still* strongly debated about! — It showed me that a least one person on the Writers Staff did some serious research. I appreciated the obscure “detail”! And, that the effort was continued in the Series!

  21. I loved the movie, but this was a rare case of the TV series that followed being much better. Still, we need to give the film extra kudos for setting the whole concept in motion.And,the series had a chance to build on the existing characters plus create new ones not forgetting it’s spin off Atlantis.

  22. I must have watched Stargate at least once a year since I bought the DVD. That means I must have seen it at least 15 times, probably more. In fact, I eschewed the TV series for a very long time because I felt it would detract from the movie. It was probably season 6 or 7 before I started watching the TV series regularly.

    The fact that the brilliant scientists who managed to figure out how to make the Stargate work but didn’t realise that they could just try dialling the 20-odd symbols for the 7th chevron until one worked has always bugged me. But then, the fact that SG-1 always knew how to dial back to Earth without needing any cartouches has always bugged me as well.

    There didn’t seem to be any DHD in the gate chamber so how did they manage to dial back to Earth anyway? At that point in their knowledge of Stargates they wouldn’t even know of the existence of DHDs. They needed a whole nuclear missile silo’s worth of equipment to operate the Earth Stargate and yet there’s no talk about how they would operate the remote one.

    Another thing that bugged me was the shot in Giza of the men pulling the Stargate into a vertical position with all those ropes. This is a 2000-4000 year old artefact. Why would you tie ropes to it and pull it up? How did they even know that it was supposed to be vertical?

    And yet another thing . . . Daniel spends a night in a cave with Sha’uri looking at some hieroglyphs and suddenly he’s completely fluent in their language? Fluent enough to talk about atomic bombs with Ra? I appreciate that they didn’t go the easy route of just having everyone speak English (or have a universal translator or other claptrap) like the TV series but Daniel still picked up the language pretty damn quickly even if all he did have to do was “learn the vowels.”

    Anyway, I don’t care. It’s still a great movie and one that I enjoy watching every single time. It also makes me want to pull out the DVDs of SG-1 and start watching that from the beginning as well. But that’s a time commitment I just can’t afford these days.

  23. I´m with monster here perhaps not deserves neither 7 (better 6). When i see in 1994 I found it entertaining but I thought of it as a tv movie. As expected with an A-team style. The cinema was half empty , they make money only because adjusted budget. But this is an example that you can do good things with poorly executed movies. Great tv series.

  24. Being retired military, we do our grocery shopping and use the clinic on the local AF base. To be fair, their uniforms do make me sneeze. I totally but the sniffly geek thing.

  25. I agree with Cat4444 that RA needed to prove to his people that the visitors were mere mortals. But I also always felt that RA wanted to ‘impress’ Daniel and had hopes he would become an ‘asset’.

    Russell & Spader were a great team as O’Neil and Jackson. Michael Shanks did a great job thru out the run of the series as Daniel Jackson. RDA was really awesome for the first 4 seasons then, after that, he started making O’Neill too wacky and left me many times wishing Kurt Russell would magically reappear in the role and bring back the dignity of the character.

    I want to know where Daniel Jackson found the person who does breast augmentations on Abydos cause Sha’ure not only changed her name to Sha’re, her cleavage went from ‘flat’ to ‘plump’! RA really had no personality to speak of and I always just thought of him as glorified set dressing. Apophis had personality as did other system lords.

    All in all, a good movie. A fairly decent TV series for the first 5 years. After that it started straying too much from things established and just lost it’s lustre. But they did bring in Vala and Mitchell and that made iit a bit better.

    R.I.P. Don S. Davis who gave Gen. Hammond dignity, humor and strength of character.

  26. Chevron7: I’ll keep my fingers crossed that Sasha likes the food!

    Deni: Thanks for the advice! I’m not sure the trip is still on because hubby’s client is thinking about rescheduling. If it’s meant to be and all that….

    That was a nearly bloodless review. I’m relieved because I didn’t want to see it shredded. This movie wasn’t one of my favorites but I enjoyed it.

  27. Great review, Cookie! A fun read for sure. I can’t really say too much that hasn’t already been said, but I would like to drop a link here that I found pretty neat to see. Kinda surreal, but still pretty awesome. I just wish he could’ve had a guest starring role at some point in the series.

    -Mike A.

  28. @Ponytail….lol, I know what you mean. Frequently, because someone thought of it first – I’ve ended up saying…Ditto what that person said.

  29. Cookie, I’m surprised you didn’t get bored with it as it was 90% special effects and only 10% actual plot, which moved like an elderly snail. Except for setting up the series, I found it to be a real snoozer. The movie writers could have taken some lessons from the TV writers on how to write a storyline with substance.

    When you get to watching the series, there is something interesting in the first ep that I just caught when Syfy aired it this morning. When the guards take off Sha’re’s clothes before getting her Goa’uld, they just break away. Who knew that the Goa’uld had Velcro?

  30. See what I have missed? I think it is difficult reviewing it with so much history of the television version. That became the Bible of the myths and thus anything that deviated made the original movie seem like errors, boo-boos, etc. At the time I did. It know any better about the symbols. I assumed there were boundless combinations. Sneezing? They are under a mountain after all.

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