Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Movie review: Helix: Season 1,2

Scientists sent to evaluate a viral outbreak at an Arctic research facility instead find a new virus that could eradicate mankind. The team eventually learns the viral outbreak may only be the beginning of a much bigger plan to destroy humanity.

Billy Campbell (Dr. Alan Farragut), Kyra Zagorsky (Julia), Mark Ghanime (Balleseros), Jordan Hayes (Sarah), Neil Napier (Peter), Hiroyuki Sanada (Hiroshi), Matt Long (Kyle), Steven Weber (Michael), Meegwun Fairbrother (Daniel).

Helix begins well enough looking like a zombie flick with potential. As the series continues the hint of a zombie apocalypse remains, but that is all. Instead the film turns into a tense drama more interested in exploring viral outbreaks and consequences than it is horror. Yet midway through season 2, just when we were about to give up, Helix throws in some more drama and twists that once again indicate the series has promise. Despite being misled, the series moves along at a decent pace, exhibits good depth, and has both a cast and storyline that indicate good potential.

Acting was pretty good with Campbell doing a reasonably good job with delivery. He also seemed to work well with the rest of the cast. Zagorsky has matured greatly showing emotion much more strongly than she did at the start. Hayes has also done well presenting solid emotion consistently. Sanada is interesting if feeling detached at times. Weber was a nice addition in Season 2 bringing a twisted mentality and nice depth.

Camera work, sets, and backgrounds are nicely done with good variety, attention to detail, and integration with CGI. Special effects are nicely done and fitting for the film without taking over. Action scenes are mild and somewhat hidden, but fitting. Dialogue is engaging and does a nice job adding depth to the series. Sound and soundtrack are amusing.

While Helix is an interesting series, don't go into it planning to see a zombie film. This one is more about viral outbreaks and conspiracy theories than zombies. If instead you enjoy more cerebral sci-fi you may enjoy this one quite a bit.

With violence, gore, disturbing images, and some sexuality, save this one for older teens and above.

Released: 2014
Reviewed: 12.21.15
Star rating: 3 out of 5
Genre: TV Sci-Fi, TV Sci-Fi Fantasy, TV Sci-Fi Drama, Sci-Fi Drama, Sci-Fi Horror

copyright ©2015 Dave Riedel

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