Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Pitch Black

2000 *****

Yup. I'm going there with a movie from 2000.  That stars Vin Diesel.  I can't help it.  I think this movie is brilliant!  I don't know how many of you have seen it, it has never been reviewed (!) so I'll briefly go through plot:

A spaceship crash lands on a barren, desert-like planet with few survivors, one of whom is a convicted murderer, Riddick, played deliciously by Vin Diesel.  The planet has three suns so it seems like finding shelter and water and not being killed by the now escaped Riddick are the most important things.  However, it soon becomes clear that there are other inhabitants on the planet, namely these guys:

This is a sculpture I found  on this site, there are actually very few images to be found of the aliens.  This is a shame because they are f*ing bad-ass.  They do have a weakness, which is light.  Unfortunately for our little group they've landed on the day the planet is going to experience a complete solar eclipse.

Things I love about this movie:
The way light and darkness is used.  The suns bleach the planet and before it all goes dark the landscape is magnificently shown.  There is another scene where a guy is surrounded by the aliens that you can see only in the flash of light.  It's awesome.
The effects and sounds of the creatures.  Like I said, bad-ass.
The characters in all their flawed and fucked-up glory.
The pace - it starts quickly and doesn't let up.

It's a smart, well done alien sci-fi flick.  I heartily recommend it to you all.  And if you saw it way back when it holds up for an effective second viewing.  Go! Go watch it now!


Catfreeek said...

I'm not sure I'd go the full 5 on it but I certainly respect your choice to do so. This picture rocks, unfortunately the sequel doesn't pack the same punch. That sculpture is badass!

Octopunk said...

I adore this movie and it's one of my 2009 viewed-not-reviewed flicks I hope to get to this year (also a great sci-fi/horror example).

Way to pick out the cool. Between this and XXX I thought Vin Diesel was da man back then.

Landshark said...

Nice! Surprising that this hadn't been reviewed before.

50PageMcGee said...

it's very telling that when offered a chance to do a sequel for XXX, Fast/Furious, and Pitch Black, he chose this, which was by far the least lucrative option of the three -- and you could have called that from the start.

it's a pity that Chronicles of Riddick was such a mess.

Johnny Sweatpants said...

I have been meaning to revisit these movies. From what I remember Pitch Black is great!

AC said...

wow, never even heard of it! thanks dcd!

Anonymous said...

I can only agree heartily with the review.
This neglected sci-fi gem actually became the 1st part of the very unneccessary Riddick-Chronicles, (even with the tomboy-character of Pitch Black - now a feminine goth model, ouch).
The cast does a good job, including sci-fi veteran Claudia Black and Rhada Mitchell who would become widely known through Woody Allen's "Melinda" 4 years later.

Pitch Black is a good example how to make an atmospheric, inspirited film with a reasonable budget.