Review of 'Riddick'

riddick.jpg Taking place five years after the events of The Chronicles of Riddick, Riddick (Vin Diesel) finds himself stranded on a brutal planet when deceived by Commander Vaako (Karl Urban) - who agreed to take him to Furya in exchange for Vaako becoming Lord Marshall. With a broken leg Riddick struggles to stay alive with the local predators out to get him: Vulture-like birds, viper-like eel demons and packs of wolf/jackal-like animals. It is the rather nasty eel creatures that cause the most problem as they block his path to a distant valley that seems to offer more opportunity. With the help of one of the jackal creatures he befriends as a pup Riddick is able to get past the eel demons only to discover a massive rain storm heading his way that brings out thousands of the eel demons - Surely something he will not be able to live through (even though it is Vin Diesel). Finding an abandoned mercenary station he activates an emergency beacon in an attempt to escape the planet. The beacon quickly brings not one but two groups to the planet: One is a group of rough-and-ready bounty hunters led by “Santana” (Jordi Mollà) and the other is a more refined set of professional mercenaries led by “Boss Johns” (Matt Nable). Stealing power units from each of the ships Riddick is keen to strike an agreement for save passage away from the planet before it kills them all…

A very gory, violent and brutal movie with the requisite (and gratuitously misplaced) shots of female flesh – A typical testosterone fest of movie making. The effects generally look really good, as you might expect, and the acting is, well, alright but not great, as you also might expect. I found the story interesting but I don't think the outcome is ever really in doubt. It is encouraging that they seek to tell a story continuing on from “The Chronicles of Riddick” but my not really remembering what happened in the first chapter was not too much of a barrier to understanding this second installment and there is sufficient exposition to get the viewer up to speed.

What is nice to see with this film is that the director took his time to tell the story though in this case it does not serve to really increase the tension or ramp up the drama but merely seems to drags things out. Diesel is, well, Diesel and in this case taken to the nth degree showing no emotion whatsoever and never panicking (not sure how many scenes there are of him sitting back and relaxing while chaos rains down around him). The boundaries of belief here are fully stretched as the film plods along with gratuitous violence to the inevitable bloody show-down…

Grab some popcorn, turn off the brain (including any sense of morals) and watch Diesel do what Diesel does best.

Rating: “Average, but who wants to be average?”

Review Date: 2016-07-02

Directed by: David Twohy

Studio: One Race Productions

Year: 2013

Length: 119 minutes

Genre: Science Fiction