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Roughnecks - The Starship Troopers Chronicles - The Complete Campaigns

4.4 out of 5 stars 115 customer reviews

Additional DVD options Edition Discs
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(Jul 05, 2005)
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

A trio of teen cadets fight on the front lines of an interstellar war.

The Complete Campaigns is a four-disc compilation of the Roughnecks: The Starship Troopers Chronicles series that was originally released on eight DVDs: The Pluto Campaign, The Hydora Campaign, The Tophet Campaign, The Tesca Campaign, The Zephyr Campaign, The Klendathu Campaign, Trackers (including the four bonus episodes), and The Homefront Campaign. While Paul Verhoeven's dark, satirical adaptation of Robert Heinlein's Starship Troopers seriously strayed from the novel, this Verhoeven-produced TV series--part sequel, part remake, all CGI animated--hews closer to the spirit of the novel, a space-age twist on a World War II battle adventure. Roughnecks: The Starship Troopers Chronicles is a series of military skirmishes and assignments on a variety of fronts, such as Bug City, water-dominated Hydora, the desert planet Tophet, the jungle planet Tesca, fiery Klendathu, and good old Earth.

The episodic nature works perfectly within this framework, and the mix of Marine grit ("No retreat, no surrender!"), military jargon, and understated melodrama give a feel somewhere between the steely seriousness of an old-fashioned war comic book and the spectacle and romance of a Japanese anime space opera. The CGI animation is less ambitious than in such feature films as Toy Story, but it's one of the most impressive examples of the animation made for TV. The detailed designs, rich textures, 3-D modeling, and awesome sense of scale (not to mention the pumped-up action and whiplash speed of the bug army) give it the look of an impossibly sophisticated video game, with the rat-a-tat editing and soaring camerawork of a Hollywood movie. The budgetary shortcuts are evident in moments of blurring and jerking, but overall it's startlingly effective. The PG-level violence may not be appropriate for younger viewers, but it's aimed at an older crowd and has won a loyal adult following.

The packaging is very convenient (a shelf-space-friendly four discs in Thinpaks), but unfortunately, serious Roughnecks fans will want to hold onto their old discs. Cramming the eight discs of content plus bonus episodes (granted, Trackers was a short disc) onto four single-sided discs apparently left no room for the producer/technical commentary tracks that accompanied most of the previous discs. The only bonus features are photo galleries and a fold-out illustration. --Sean Axmaker, David Horiuchi

Beyond Roughnecks at

Listmania: The Military in Space

More Films from Paul Verhoeven

The Book

Stills from Roughnecks: The Starship Troopers Chronicles (click for larger image)

Special Features

  • Includes The Pluto Campaign, The Hydora Campaign, The Tophet Campaign, The Tesca Campaign, The Zephyr Campaign, The Klendathu Campaign, Trackers, and The Homefront Campaign
  • Four bonus episodes: Pluto and Beyond, Propaganda Machine, Marooned, Courtmartial of Lt. Razak
  • Collectible Roughnecks illustration
  • Photo galleries
  • Bonus previews

Product Details

  • Actors: Nicholas Guest, James Horan, Alexander Polinsky, Rino Romano, Elizabeth Daily
  • Writers: Duane Capizzi, Jeff Kline, Pat Allee, Richard Raynis
  • Producers: Jeffery Scheetz
  • Format: AC-3, Box set, Color, Dolby, Full Screen, NTSC, Surround Sound, Collector's Edition
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles for the Hearing Impaired: English
  • Region: Region 1 encoding (US and Canada only)
    Some Region 1 DVDs may contain Regional Coding Enhancement (RCE). Some, but not all, of our international customers have had problems playing these enhanced discs on what are called "region-free" DVD players. For more information on RCE, click .
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Number of discs: 4
  • Rated:
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
  • DVD Release Date: July 5, 2005
  • Run Time: 778 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (115 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B0009I8QI6
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #39,079 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Roughnecks - The Starship Troopers Chronicles - The Complete Campaigns" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Verified Purchase
This is a television series based both on a book by Robert Heinlein, Starship Troopers, and a movie of the same name, directed by Paul Verhoeven. The movie was problematic in several respects. On the director's commentary of that movie, Verhoeven explains that he did not have enough money to create the alien insect warriors and create the human military technology in Heinlein's book. He decided to create the aliens and present the human soliders without the weapons that they had in the book, making it appear implausible most of the time that the humans had any chance in the battles at all. This series corrects this problem by providing the troopers with weapons that give them that chance. The other problem with the movie was that Verhoeven disagreed with the political theory advanced in the book, in which only those who serve in the military can become full citizens and can vote. Apparently having lived through World War II as a Dutch child, Verhoeven has a very low opinion of any militaristic society. He therefore satirizes Heinlein's views and fills the movie with military uniforms based on Nazi uniforms, often making it hard to sympathize with the defenders of humanity. Verhoeven's satire was great in Robocop, but produces an uneasy effect in the movie. Happily, the military philosophy is hardly mentioned in the series and the military uniforms are not based in any obvious way on German World War II dress. The series actually resembles most closely the cable mini-series Band of Brothers produced by Tom Hanks for HBO. In the Hanks series a group of soldiers train, fight their way across Europe, and end up in Germany.Read more ›
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Verified Purchase
Purchasing the Roughnecks DVD boxed set will not only save you money, but it will easily clear up any confusion surrounding the proper play order since the 4 volume set is clearly sequenced and labeled. The disc breakdown looks something like this:

Disc 1: The Pluto Campaign / The Hydora Campaign
Disc 2: The Tophet Campaign / The Tesca Campaign
Disc 3: The Zephyr Campaign / The Klendathu Campaign
Disc 4: Trackers / The Homefront Campaign / 4 Bonus Episodes (the clip shows)

There is no new material here, still no conclusion to the series. In fact, there is LESS material than you will find on the individually packaged campaigns. The "Extras" have been paired down considerably and there are no foreign language tracks or subtitles of any kind. The only extras included in the boxed set are the same Photo Galleries you will find on the original releases and an exclusive illustration insert. The artwork on the insert is fine and I liked the fact that it listed the titles of the individual episodes on the inside, but the chapter breaks on the DVDs are still identical to the original releases and don't necessarily match the original episode transitions (although some do).

So in summary, here are the Pros and Cons of owning the Roughnecks: STC Boxed Set:

- You will save nearly $100 (or more) compared to the price you'd pay if you buy each campaign disc individually.
- The campaign order is clearly labeled and already sorted out for you.
- There is a pretty fold-out picture included.
- It takes up less space on a shelf.
Read more ›
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Starship Troopers Chronicles is a continuation/retelling based on the original Starship Troopers movie by Paul Verhooven. The series adds considerably to the variety of the Bugs, shows the Skinnies for the first time, and treats the cameraderie, training, and discipline of the soldiers with the utmost seriousness, not with the vicious mockery of the movie. They are followed through several campaign story arcs that take them to widely varying planetary environments, even eventually back to Earth to fight off an invasion of their homeworld. The characters and their relationships show great interplay and tremendous growth as the stories unfold. Unlike the movie, the power armor introduced in the book is everywhere, and the major characters of the book are there, along with quite a number of excellent new folks.

STC was an excellent show for its time, but it was never given proper treatment by U.S. television. The characters, designs, artwork, and stories were excellent. This was one of the earlier shows done with motion capture technology, so much of the animation is not up to current standards, but so what? It's still a good series, far better than the abomination of a movie that inspired it, and much closer to the spirit of Heinlein's superb original book.

It's very unlikely that new episodes have been produced for it. The producers said several years ago that there was effectively zero chance that the missing four episodes would be produced, so it's probably just a repackaging of the earlier material, maybe with some decent extras. It would be wonderful if those extras included the scripts and preliminary art from the unproduced eps.
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