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Ultramarines: A Warhammer 40,000 Movie (2010)

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A squad of Ultramarines answer a distress call from an Imperial Shrine World. A full Company of Imperial Fists was stationed there, but there is no answer from them. The squad investigates to find out what has happened there.

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Cast

Cast overview:
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Cpt. Severus (voice)
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Brother Carnak (voice)
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Brother Proteus (voice)
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Brother Verenor (voice)
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Brother Pythol (voice)
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Brother Nidon (voice)
Ben Bishop ...
Crastor (voice)
Christopher Finney ...
Brother Boreas (voice)
...
Brother Hypax (voice)
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Storyline

A squad of Ultramarines answer a distress call from an Imperial Shrine World. A full Company of Imperial Fists was stationed there, but there is no answer from them. The squad investigates to find out what has happened there.

Add Full Plot | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

In the grim darkness of the far future there is only war

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Animation | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong bloody violence | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

13 December 2010 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Ultramarines  »

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1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

There are no women depicted in the film, not even a feminine computer voice. See more »

Goofs

A Chaplain's standard weapon is the Crozius Arcanum: a close combat melee power weapon which is designed to discharge its energy on contact and inflict damage on even armored targets. It's not a ranged weapon, suggesting that Carnaks was a unique piece of wargear with special abilities (a common thing in the WH40K universe) See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Space Marine: Brother Nidon, report to the Chapel! Guard the Codex!
Nidon: I must protect the relic! In the Emperor's holy name! I must protect the relic...
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User Reviews

 
Better than the trailers would have us believe.
18 December 2010 | by (United Kingdom) – See all my reviews

So here we have our first Warhammer 40,000 movie.

Immediately there are some flaws that need to be addressed: Codex Pictures, the company responsible, have created this movie out of nothing less than a love of the background. While this is not a problem (and you can tell that they're not about to make any mistakes with the lore) this does mean that they've done it out of their own pocket. Games Workshop who own Warhammer 40,000 did not put any money into the movie! What we're left with is a CGI movie which suffers from bad CGI in many places. At worst, this can mean that shots look like they're from ancient video games (Ages of Empires I's cutscenes spring to mind). At best, which seems to be just as frequent, the shots are actually quite stunning. Mostly, it averages between the two.

There you have the first fault, the second is camera-work. Yet again, this is variable and at the start of the film I thought it was awesome. However, as the film progressed I felt that the camera shots managed to spot and point out the bad CGI. And while the beginning is strong in this film, the middle seems to hold on to lingering camera shots just a little too much. This, I fear, is the reason a lot of the action is not quite as exciting as in the beginning. That, and a lack of the mighty soundtrack to accompany these scenes.

Now, before I commence with the good I must address that this film is for fans of 40k. An ingrained knowledge of the background and understanding of Space Marines and Chaos is required to get full enjoyment out of the movie. It is not to say that you won't find it entertaining as a newcomer but you may find certain mannerisms of the protagonists strange, or not understand what an astropath is, or find it difficult to believe that this elite squad is after a relic that happens to be a book... the list goes on.

Warhammer 40,000 is an established background which started rooting itself in '87. No exceptions are made to explain it's immensely vast background in this movie. As a matter of fact, it focuses on relatively little when you look at ALL of the other things that didn't make it into this movie.

Now for the good:

The first thing that springs to mind is the Story. Given reign over the script for the first 40k film is top 40k novelist Dan Abnett. He delivers. Whenever there wasn't enough happening a timely line would add depth, humour or character to the film, keeping my interest throughout. It's great how the soldiers who refer to themselves as brothers feel like a brotherhood, and that each character acts as an individual (though it may be a little hard to tell more than four apart when they don helmets) with their own personalities and motivations.

The plot is pretty strong for a 70-minute flick. As far as I could see there were no plot holes and as far as plots go this one seems straight forward but still manages to pack a few surprises.

Next for kudos is the soundtrack. Though tastes may dictate whether or not you like this soundtrack, it is very appropriate for the movie. The kind of Latin chant is very fitting for Astartes warriors and their monastic-militant lifestyles. The sound of these chants are very strong and evoke powerful emotion. The opening scene aboard the Ultramarines' Strike Cruiser is a high example of this and is used well to implement the action and dialogue.

Thirdly comes the voice actors. These voice actors are brilliant and fill the boots of Astartes perfectly. Though you may prefer the baritone thunder of THQ's Space Marines in Dawn of War II, the voices chosen make characters more distinguishable and less like generic action heroes.

Lastly a mention goes to all the parts in this movie that rang true to fans like me. With any other company such a movie would look a hundred times better but would be at massive risk of not being true to the lore. We've seen it a million times before, it's just good to see it done right.

Overall, the film starts strong, wavers in the middle and builds again in momentum near the end. It isn't perfect but with all considerations on the table - it's good - 7/10.

A Final Note: If you love Warhammer 40,000 and want to see better movies in future, go and buy this. Buy it for you, buy it for other people you know'll like it. Buy it even if you didn't like it. It took Games Workshop 20 years before they let any company make a move, and it was this one. Future Warhammer 40,000 movies with other races and new stories (maybe even Horus Heresy movies) rest with the amount of money this film makes. Codex are out on a limb here. Furthermore, if you've watched this and are able to make videos, upload a review to the Ultramarines website. They can't improve their movies without knowing what they need to improve (and I'm sure they'll be happy to hear the positive feedback too!).


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