Dear oh dear. Before I start let me say I dig the first two movies. I actually like Chronicles of Riddick more than Pitch Black, probably one of the few that does. I was jazzed when David Twohy and Vin Diesel announced they were bringing Riddick back. They did mention that they were returning to the bare bones type story of the first, rather than the grand spectacle of the second. However I wasn’t expecting an almost carbon copy of Pitch Black, which is what we have here.
The story begins with Riddick stranded and alone on a desolate planet. Riddick is severely wounded and nearly every creature he comes across wants to kill him. Riddick then explains how he found himself in this unfortunate position and what he has been up to since the last movie. When Riddick realises that it’s time for him to leave the planet, he activates a beacon which alerts two groups of mercenaries to his position. The first group that lands are lead by Santana (Jordi Molla). The second group are a bit more high tech and they’re lead by Boss Johns (Matt Nable), father of William Johns (Cole Hauser) from Pitch Black.
Riddick begins to despatch the men one by one, but stops when he realises they may all need to band together for the threat that’s coming. Now if I have made that sound exciting, believe me when I say it isn’t. The supporting cast who include Dave Bautista and Katee Sackhoff are wooden at best. The remainder of the supporting cast are throwaway and completely forgettable. Vin Diesel has some truly awful lines, pissing away any ounce of menace the character of Riddick had left. However Matt Nable who plays Boss Johns was surprisingly good, really giving the part his all. The CGI is terrible, and the action is truly mundane.
There is a very brief cameo by Karl Urban as Vaako from Chronicles of Riddick, giving you a small taste of what used to be. Although to be fair, even Karl Urban looks bored. The plot and pretty much all of the perilous situations the characters find themselves in are far too similar to Pitch Black. This could have been something special. Instead we get a movie with terrible CGI backdrops and the majority filmed on what are clearly soundstages. Awful. This copy of Riddick was provided by the kind folks from Fetch Publicity. You can find their site at http://www.fetch.fm and also follow them on twitter @fetchpublicity for some great competitions and tweet alongs.