It’s probably no surprise that “Pitch Black” is one of my favorite movies of all times. Believe it or not, it’s also one of my wife’s favorite movies. (I still can’t quite get my head around that one.) We had never gotten around to seeing the sequel, “The Chronicles of Riddick”, until last week. It was … okay. I kind of figure the studio’s conversation with David Twohy, went something like this:
Studio: Hey, David Twohy, that movie “Pitch Black” was popular and cool! Here is ten times more money to make the sequel!
David Twohy: Hey thanks studio! Now I can buy all kinds of special effects and CGI! Woo-hoo!
David Twohy: Uh-oh, I spent all my money on special effects and CGI and now I don’t have anything left for a script! Now what?!?!?!
Vin Diesel: Let’s raid Shakespeare.
“The Chronicles of Riddick” put my wife to sleep in about 30 minutes, which is actually pretty good for a SF film. It’s too bad she didn’t stay awake longer because “CoR” actually improves as it goes along (the friends we watched it with may disagree with me) and would likely benefit from a repeat viewing (the friends we watched it with may REALLY disagree with me). As noted above, it’s got some Shakespearean elements (think “Macbeth” in space) and some Biblical elements (which are spoiler-ish, so I won’t reveal what they are). Unfortunately, the bad guys suffer from a Borg-ish “assimilate or die” look and mentality. If your villains are going to channel the Borg, they’d better be scarier than the Borg, and these folks aren’t. Plus they have bad haircuts.
Anyway, the bottom line is: Don’t go in expecting another “Pitch Black” and you won’t be (too) disappointed.