Battlestar Galactica (1978)

Rating: ***
Producer: Glen Larson
Special Effects: John Dykstra
Cast: Lorne Greene, Richard Hatch, Dirk Benedict, Maren Jensen, Terry Carter, Jane Seymour, Noah Hathaway, Laurette Spang, Rick Springfield

After a thousand years of war, the mysterious race known as Cylons have sued for peace with the human race. Unfortunately, the peace celebration turns out to be a ruse, and the annihilation of mankind begins, taking everyone completely be surprise. Only a handful of survivors escorted by a single surviving battleship, the Battlestar Galactica, manage to escape the holocaust, and they decide to chart a course for the home planet of the fabled thirteenth colony of man - Earth. Of course they have to deal with all sorts of hardships on the way and are mercilessly persued by the Cylons. John Dykstra's effects are superb and show a marked improvement over his work in "Star Wars" (1977). Unfortunately, all of the effects shots get used over and over throughout the show (and even the series!), making them seem less spectacular. The acting is okay, but a lot of the cheesy dialog and plot points just seem to scream "TV movie!" The film seemed much more impressive to me as a kid, but it's still highly entertaining today.