Sadly, this movie appears to be heading towards "lost film" status due to what seem to be distribution tangles following completion of its production sometime in 2007. Its releases(both theatrical and video)have been changed and canceled nearly everywhere except Japan, which saw a very limited theatrical run in the summer of 2009 and recently released a DVD that I was fortunate enough to have imported(at absurd expense).
It's a seemingly original film, combining actual space station and astronaut footage with an engaging and entertaining science- fiction/horror narrative that even touches on the 2012 "doomsday" prophecies(in a much more cryptic and subtly unnerving fashion than Roland Emmerich and John Cusack ever intended). The story is presented as recovered black box data recorder footage from the downed wreckage of the Almaz space station and is shot for the most part in a first person perspective similar to films like THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT and the recent PARANORMAL ACTIVITY.
ALMAZ BLACK BOX takes place over the course of just a few days as a pair of representatives from an unnamed European corporation are sent to evaluate the government run space station's potential private value. Not long after their arrival, a data transmission of unknown content and origin is received that cripples the station's power and navigation systems and also seems to have damaging physical and psychological effects upon its now expanded crew. It's at this point that some strange phenomena begin to occur and the film ramps up its unsettling and unearthly premise.
If anyone is interested in the film and wants to purchase a copy, Amazon.jp sells a REGION 2 NTSC disc. Unfortunately, if you're an international buyer, Amazon.jp will only ship via international express courier service and the price is quite high(nearly as much as the disc). Also be certain that your DVD player supports alternate region discs before you buy.
(FYI-ALMAZ was apparently an actual reconnaissance project of the Russian Space Agency, part of which burned up in Earth's atmosphere in August 1977 after what has been called "crew psychological problems." Some information regarding the actual space project and people involved can be found here: www.russianspaceweb.com/almaz)
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