Serenity Joss Whedon

The best sci-fi movie of the year didn't come from someone, ahem, George, who ruined one of the greatest, most beloved series of all-time, ending it with a climatic thud, I mean, "noooooooo!!!," nor did it come equipped with a sardonic robot, a rapper turned actor or a guide to the universe (although that one was actually really, really good). No, the finest sci-fi film of '05 came from a director more notable for his conflicted vampires and female slayers than his short lived sci-fi/western series, Firefly. But, spurned on by DVD sales and an ardent fan base, the crew of Serenity, against all odds, once again flew in a galaxy not so far away, battling ravenous Reavers, attempting to discover the secret behind young River's insanity, dodging the Alliance (like an evil U.S.A., wait a secÂ…) and a silky smooth assassin while loaded with a bigger budget for space battles and the same razor sharp wit and blend of action and comedic timing Joss made his name on. The sad part is, no one saw it on theatres, but that shouldn't stop you from acquiring the DVD, as the film is excellent and the DVD's beefy for a single-disc. Included are the customary featurettes but the real score is the Joss Whedon commentary. Whedon is, as always, incredibly funny and deadpan, and while he sometimes gets caught up in complimenting his cast and crew (yes, the lighting is nice), the man has a gift for the funny, is engaging, and explains many of his choices (such as killing off certain characters to mess with people's preconceptions about where the film is going) and difficulties in transferring an ensemble TV show to the big screen with a minimum of talk-y exposition. There are also a slew of deleted scenes and an outtake reel (with lots of swearing), as well as an incredibly heart-felt introduction (played before the movie in theatres) of Joss thanking and encouraging his fans, the Brown Coats. Buy two copies and, who knows, maybe they'll make another movie, it worked before. (Universal)