Is Dzhanik Fayziev’s Cosmoball a Grand Slam?

11 Apr Cosmoball [Blu-ray]: Viktoriya Agalakova, Svetlana Ivanova,  Mikhail Efremov, Dzhanik Fayzie: Movies & TVBy Ed Sum
(The Vintage Tempest)

Available to order or stream online on Amazon USA

The Russian made film, Cosmoball is out, and will it score a home run? Technically, the game is a high tech spin of rugby, and anyone familiar with the cartoon Galactik Football to which this film is based on will recognize a few ideas.

Dzhanik Fayziev, Andrey Rubanov, Drew Row and Twister Murchison are the screenwriters of this campy science fiction superhero epic, and it’s a doozy of a tale. This work crams in three different story threads. Some of it is inspired from recognizable sources: Bloodbowl (the Games Workshop miniature battle game) mixed in with Quidditch for the sport, Farscape for the world setting and the Avengers franchise for the big bad. Cherno can be related to Thanos; he drives the plot in his desire to escape prison.

Anton (Georgiy Bestaev) is this film’s protagonist and he can teleport. He realizes his abilities after an accident and he gets recruited for this intergalactic game. The fate of his home planet is at stake, and he has to learn how to play well with others.

This tournament is loved everywhere. If you’ve seen Alita and found the Motoball act (or know of the bloodier version in the manga, Gunnm), exciting, this sport comes very close to replicating that feel. Despite the Green Lantern level CGI and modestly budgeted effects work, pardoning the pun, I rolled with it and enjoyed the game moments as it’s supposed to be, kinetic and wild. By the film’s end, I had to search for the original cartoon and can report it’s freely available on YouTube. Based on what I’ve seen so far, a lot more plot and character development factors into the program, as teams are training for game day.

Cosmoball Trailer

When compared to this film, three seasons says a lot about its success when it aired in Europe. Also, I admit to having a soft spot for Games Workshop’s product since we get some inspired craziness from the different aliens in this movie versus fantasy figures about a game of tossing a ball that’s most likely a neutron star around. To note, this object can destroy obstacles unless it’s carefully handled.

With this Michael Bay style popcorn flick, it’s best to turn your brain off and try not to ask too many questions. This work is a sensory experience and it looks gorgeous when upscaled to 4K.

The English dub is very well done; I’ll be rewatching in Russian when I’m in the mood. No extras are included, and that’s okay for this Well GO USA’s preparation for this release. I suspect the budget was fully spent and the filmmakers didn’t have a lot of time to consider additional material to put into the home video product.

When watching this film, I’d tune the 5.1 DTS audio track down and turn off the subwoofers. Your neighbours will thank you for it.

3½ Stars out of 5

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