#watched: SPECTRAL on Netflix
SPECTRAL was a more-then-decent feature film for television, featuring high-end production values and splendid art direction!
"When a seemingly otherworldly force wreaks havoc on a war-torn European city, an engineer teams up with an elite Special Ops unit to stop it, and discovers the truth behind the ghostly apparitions."This is MY edited interpretation of the official synopsis (previously featured) without spoiling everything (*some of which the screen grabs might tho, so BE WARNED) … and where essentially ”The Engineer saves the day.” - which somehow (I feel) does not lend itself to a feature film’s need for “happyphat endings”, but in the context of the current television landscape, works fine and dandy, methinks!
While memories of tv movies sometimes dwelled within the borders of a B-to-D Grade films, “Spectral” more than elevates beyond “B” (but shy of a full length feature film, only in terms of a quicker resolution) … But I am getting ahead of myself!
Boasting a “Legendary Pictures” production, the “American supernatural science fiction-thriller film” made it’s debut on Netflix on December 9th, and is directed by Nic Mathieu in his film directorial debut, featuring a crew of actors familiar to some (Lethal Weapons’ Clayne Crawford / “Martin Riggs” is in here too!), but frankly not in the “regular” wheelhouse of “top names” - which worked out fine, as the cast was pretty effective! Some moreso than others, but I’m not concerned with that haha
And while I am not going to go all-critical and in-depth on the characters and story-telling (and am not interested to, sorry), I will instead gush on further at the art direction and design!
Kudos to the Production Design by Tom Meyer, and Costume Design by Lizz Wolf, and of course the Art Department! The hand-props especially the weapons, looked amazing! (Full crew credits on IMDb).
As a fan of the sci-fi/apocalyptique-genre, SPECTRAL was much more than a decent, and truthfully exceeded my expectations - from seeing the trailer and stills … so yeah, you can safely say I liked it loads :)
The locations chosen where great (filmed in Hungary), and the mood and environment suited the story perfectly! Even the chosen color filter did not irk me as much hahaha
I could hardly get over the design of the film, which was surprisingly impressive and visually effective - from the battle armour to the blasters and even automated scout dogs (reminding me of the collectibles from GUMS Production) - the mixed technology, and especially the cobbled-up kitbash notion of the final weapons against the spectral beings was delicious to me (as a kitbasher of the 1/6th-scaled hobby back in the day), and no doubt coloured my acceptance of this film, without a doubt LOL
And while my knowledge of SFX and such technical advances are being my feeble understanding, I have always championed the cause of “ENTERTAINMENT”, and “Spectral” did more than a decent job of it! Bolstered by Netflix’s accomplishment on this, I might try ARQ next hahaha!
You can watch SPECTRAL on Netflix here (Sorry, cyber-link here in Singapore goes directly to the sg-domain).
Scroll down for some more screensnaps to gawk at the level of visual presentation, and be warned: MINOR SPOILERS ahead!