Movie night returns with the action film “Riddick” which sees Vin Diesel reprise his role as our anti-hero Richard B Riddick, but no one calls him Richard, or god forbid Dick as I suspect he would separate their heads from their shoulders.
This marks the 3rd movie in the Riddick series/franchise. The first one called “Pitch Black” which is one of my favourite movies of all, It was a survival horror-ish movie where our intrepid group of victims and Riddick (who is there as the escaped convict and murderer) crashes on a derelict planet and face a race against time to find a way of escaping the planet before the indigenous creature population turn them into dinner. Its tense and exciting, plus Riddick is the consummate anti-hero, will he kill them all? What is ultimate plan? We just don’t know.
Then along comes the 2nd film “The Chronicles Of Riddick” it takes everything that made Pitch Black great and what made the character of Riddick so compelling, and throws it down the toilet. chronicles morphs everything into a generic star wars type clone, its boring, the story just doesn’t engage you, and isn’t worth talking about……
Now, on to the 3rd film which is why we’re here right? Happily this brings back a lot of what makes Riddick such a fun character to watch. The intensity, his ability as a warrior of supreme skill and an absolute survivor. I think the movie even addresses the mis-steps that chronicles took by one of the lines uttered by Riddick “I Had Got Too Civilised” I’m paraphrasing a little but that’s the gist of it, and that he needed to re-discover himself.
So the film is set on a derelict planet, full of creatures that could kill Riddick at every step. So far so familiar, and he goes through, what is essentially a survival course of his own making, lesson 1 crafting vicious blade, lesson 2 how to cut monsters in half…. You get the idea. This beginning is rather interesting, as any sort of story is kept to a minimum while Riddick finds his feet again. When the story starts to get going we find out that thankfully the movie has ditched the Necro-Monger shit from Chronicles, we never see them again, so thank fuck for that!
When the story does pick up, Riddick discovers an abandoned mercenary outpost and activates an emergency beacon which brings us to the next act of the film. Groups of cut-throat mercenaries, one group led by the guy who plays the number 1 bad guy in Bad Boys 2, the next and final group are better equipped and decidedly shiny looking in their aluminium type armour led by a Merc called “Johns” (Surnames being the only names in the Riddick universe it seems).
Johns Is significant because there was another guy called Johns in “Pitch Black” so what is the connection? At first I thought this was that Johns but with a different actor, forgetting the fact that he got minced in the first movie.
So who is this Johns? Its Daddy Johns! This was my only real problem with the movie because the actor looks far too young to play a father to what was a fully grown man in “Pitch Black” Now don’t get me wrong, he played his part well and I liked his character and the actor, but it took some immersion out of the story for me due to the apparent youthful looking dad.
Another fun character was “Dahl” or however you spell it, she is the token women in the cast (seriously, the only one) what makes her really different however is that she’s a legitimate bad-ass who looks like she could take you, rather than just a pair of tits who we have to get constantly reminded about how tough she is. So bravo to the film makers! Another interesting tidbit about her character is that she is a lesbian, by way of you just don’t see that too often in action films which usually have any female character try to jump on the heroes dick at any opportunity.
Her sexual persuasion doesn’t exactly deter the men of the rival merc team, and they try it on with her quite frequently, which she rebuffs violently, which is fun to watch. The other thing I truly love about her character is the banter she has with Riddick, there’s this back and forth between them about how they are going to bone. Only this time she seems to accept it with a flirtatious smile, I guess bad-ass murderers do it for her if she ever decided to go for cock.
You might be wondering why Riddick has these back and forth’s with the mercs, since they are there to kill him and collect the bounty on his head. It turns out that the planet they’re on is inhabited by nasty beasties that seem to hibernate just below the surface of the planet? Who get woken up by massive rain storms, and it just so happens a massive all-encompassing storm is rolling in and they have to race against time to leave the planet before they get turned to mince, sounds familiar… Again
The problem they face is one of time, and another called Riddick. Who so happens to have hidden the power cells to the merc ships, so they either play ball with him, or remain stranded on the planet and face their imminent demise.
The only way to really describe the action is that its like a re-imagining of Pitch Black, which makes sense, go back to the formula that worked rather than build on the shit house of a 2nd movie. Although im not sure where they can go from here if they decide to make another one, if they do then hopefully they learn the lessons they took from this film.
I thoroughly enjoyed it, It is well worth the price you can be sure of that.
Thanks for reading 🙂