Behind the Scenes
Featurettes: Bringing Halo into Reality, Awakening a Sleeper: The Making of Halo 4 Forward Unto Dawn, The Perfect Spartan, Rendering the Real: The Design of Forward Unto Dawn, One Epic Tour: The Stunts of Forward Unto Dawn, A Drive with Warthog Pete, Built for Battle, Outfitting the War: The Costumes of Forward Unto Dawn, The Final Arc and Tether to Digital Space. Each doing what they say on the tin, these Featurettes combine into a weighty and comprehensive hour-long Behind the Scenes Documentary which covers all the bases and features participation from all of the main cast and crew members.
Vignettes: Enlist, Cryo, Joyride, Capture the Flag, Classroom Lecture, Squad and 7 Cadet Interviews. Each running at less than a couple of minutes in length, these snippets are actually more like 22 minutes of Deleted Scenes and not Behind the Scenes, with the cast members – in character – giving brief reflections on the title subjects. Some of the footage has been used in the main feature, but most of it is new (using the same sets of course) and we get to see most of the characters reflect on joining the academy; a couple of them talking about what cyrosleep is like; a trip in the warthog; more wargames; and plenty of one-on-one interview snippets that allow us further background into these characters.
Corbulo Academy of Military Sciences Recruitment Video is a 2-minute faux recruitment video for the Academy.
The disc is rounded off by a couple of Trailers for the main feature.
The massively popular game franchise – probably the only thing that has kept Microsoft in the gaming market for the last decade – has suffered numerous aborted film productions over the years, with still no firm idea of when we are going to finally get a decent adaptation. Forward Unto Dawn is more like an extended live-action promo for Halo 4, or a decent TV series pilot, and does not carry much weight as a feature film in its own right. Still it’s a good teaser for what we’d need in the real thing, and I’m sure fans will struggle to resist picking it up and revelling in all the great little nods to our favourite gaming moments.
On Region B-locked UK Blu-ray we get very good video and excellent audio as well as a impressive extras package – a release perhaps only let down by the knowledge that the US counterpart has a little more (including no less than 3 Audio Commentaries) to offer. Still, if you’re a big Halo fan, this is worth a look.
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