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Battlestar Galactica (1978)



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Of all the Star Wars rip-offs of the late 1970s, Battlestar Galactica is the most shameless, although the film does take a break in the middle stretch to rip off Star Trek instead. It was originally a television series, and so hungry were people for space adventures that they went to the theaters to see the film, edited from the first episodes of the series, which had already aired.

The story is the only major aspect not directly lifted from Star Wars. It's about the near destruction of humanity and a remnant of people aboard the Galactica to find the forgotten colony of humanity: Earth, of course. The first 45 minutes of the film set this up, and the rest chronicles an adventure they have on the way.

Well and good, but it's done without a shred of humor or wit, without depth of character or worldbuilding. The Cylons, the race of robot things, are intent on destroying humanity apparently just to be evil. There are traitors in the human ranks as well, but only one appears to have a tangible reason.

There are occasional interesting moments, but they don't add up to much. There are a lot more movies and television series about space adventures now than there were in 1978; the need for Battlestar Galactica has become obsolete.

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