I have to admit I had low expectations walking into this movie. This franchise has been very hit or miss. The first movie Pitch Black was an amazing story that brought both scifi and horror into the same film. Directed by David Twohy, the movie made $53 million worldwide and came in third its opening weekend. Not only did it have Vin Diesel before he became a huge action star, it had actors like Keith David and Radha Mitchell bring amazing performances to the screen. The sequel The Chronicles of Riddick, while did better in its first weekend with second place and $115 million worldwide, critics destroyed it with a 29% Rotten Tomatoes score.
Riddick is the third movie in the franchise with Vin Diesel once again as Riddick, who finds himself stranded on an untamed planet crawling with aliens that want to kill him. Eventually, he finds himself against not one but two groups of bounty hunters. This is where the fun begins as Riddick does what he does best and starts taking them down one by one. Though after the situation turns, he finds himself having to team up with them to fight a bigger foe.
What I Liked About It;
Vin Diesel once again is in top form with the Riddick character. The tough guy factor is an A+ for him again as he brings his deadly viciousness to the bounty hunters that come looking for him. Which of course sees solid performances from actress Katee Sackhoff and pro wrestler turned actor Dave Bautista, who I expect great things in his future.
Also an awesome performance from Matt Nable, leader of the bounty hunters. Watching his “by the books” and good guy attitude makes you want to watch a movie following that character. Like Bautista, I expect he will go on to do some brilliant work in the future.
Though who steals the show is actor Jordi Molla, the leader of the other bounty hunter group. He’s one of those actors who play bad guys brilliantly and does it so well that you enjoy hating him. Which I think is the testament to how good he really is.
What I Think Didn’t Work;
Really it felt like two different movies. The first half of the movie is beyond slow and really sets a terrible pacing for the overall story. I get it, you need to set up the story of how barren the planet is and how Riddick is going to survive, but they could have cut it in half and it would have been just as good. By the time Riddick gets to interact with the bounty hunters, you find yourself saying it’s about time.
If you are a fan of the franchise, then you actually might like it. It answers a bunch of questions as to what happens after The Chronicles of Riddick. You even see Karl Urban make a quick appearance. But If you don’t anything about the movie or character, I would stay away from seeing it in the theaters and just Redbox it when it comes to DVD. All in all, I say rent it, it’s worth checking out, just not in a movie theater.
Check out the movie trailer below.