Cast:Vin Diesel, Radha Mitchell, Cole Hauser, Keith David, Lewis Fitz-Gerald, Claudia Black, Rhiana Griffith, John Moore
Pitch Black is a favorite of mine when it comes to more modern sci-fi/horror films and one of the few pics I can think of to feature a truly mysterious and badass anti-hero. The Riddick character is still much loved today, especially given the fact that we know very little about him, which adds to the charm of the character. Of course since the release of the original movie there has been a sequel, animated flick, novel and game, which served as a prequel to this, but despite all of that there's still little actually known about him or his past aside from bits and pieces here and there.
The story focuses around a small group of people that crash land on a strange barren planet where they must band together to not only find a way out, but also protect themselves from an escaped murderer named Riddick, who was held prisoner on the ship. It's not long before they realize Riddick is the least of their worries after they discover that the planet (which is home to three suns) will soon face an eclipse, which they fear will bring forth an onslaught of carnivorous nocturnal creatures. Now, with the help of Riddick, they must fight against the clock to get off the planet before it's too late.
The movie itself is great thanks to its character development early on, which enables the audience to actually care for these people and what happens to them. They don't encounter the alien species until at least half-way through, which is when the pacing really kicks into gear, as the group is forced to rely on the mysterious criminal known as Riddick (with the help of his mirrored eyes that aid him in seeing in the dark) to guide them towards safety. It's also visually stunning, with its use of shadows, lights, and colors. I especially love the look of the creatures through Riddick's eyes, especially in their first appearance when they come up from underground in large swarms.
We're given a decent array of creatures, all of which are equally as deadly as the other, although the spotlight is mostly shown on these strange hammerhead-looking things with dozens of razor sharp teeth. These beasts can't see by normal means (they appear to have no eyes), so they emit these odd sounds that work similar to sonar in capturing the shapes and outlines of other beings around them. Another key factor that I really enjoyed about the flick is the fact that you can never fully trust the Riddick character, and writer/director David Twohy made sure the audience knew that by reminding us in several scenes that this guy would likely stab you in the back to save his own life.
A great modern sci-fi/horror flick and another personal favorite of mine, Pitch Black offers some striking visuals (which surprisingly still hold up today) and an awesome memorable anti-hero that even 10 years later is still hard to match in other films. Definitely worth a look if you haven't caught the film yet.
|Posted on August 13, 2011 - 11:09pm | FrighT MasteR|