Riddick – The Chronicles of Riddick Part 3
Ok, let me give the verdict right at the beginning, before we go into the review- I give this movie only 3 stars out of a possible 5 – because the first half is awesome but the post interval second half drags.
Riddick is the third part of the sci-fi movie- Pitch Black which was followed by the second part- Chronicles of Riddick, a movie shown so often on all TV channels. If you haven’t see either of them – in Pitch Black the story starts with a prison ship crash landing on an abandoned planet where the guards and the prisoners have to join hands to survive the alien creatures which hunt them in the dark. Needless to say the hero Riddick, who is a prisoner for unspecified crimes, is one of the few to escape alive at the end of the movie.
The second part, Chronicles of Riddick tried to play on the success of the first movie, by building up the character of the lone warrior Riddick as a survivor against all odds and all enemies and trying to re-hash the story of Conan the Barbarian by making Riddick a king – the ruler of his enemies the Necromancers who had attacked his home world Furya earlier- at the end of the movie. And this is where this movie- Riddick-3 begins.
The movie starts with the Lord Marshal of the Necromancers- Riddick trying to reach his home planet Furya. But betrayed by his commanders, he is instead marooned in a nameless planet called Not-Furya. Attacked by his own bodyguards and left for dead, he survives the harsh and hostile environment by his brawn and bravery. The first 30 minutes of the movie has some of the best action scenes seen in recent films. It is one man against alien beast after beast after beast all trying to eat him. There are no dialogues – no one to speak to on that empty world- except for a few mumbled words in typical Vin Diesel style when he challenges the beasts to come and get him.
The CGI is awesome, especially the bizarre scorpion like thing with eyes between its pincers like tail. As the long thin serpent like head rises out of the swamp, we assume that it’s just a slimy serpent like thing, but only when Riddick cuts of its poisonous sting does the rest of the beast, a gigantic all-teeth creature come out of the mud to attack him. Like any sensible spacer, Riddick captures one of its young and inoculates himself and his pet dog with the venom to develop resistance to the poison which ensures that he survives all later attacks from the beast.
After the furious first half spent on surviving the vicious planet, Riddick decides to get away from it by attracting a few mercenaries who will be willing to hunt him down for the ransom on his head. As he activates an emergency beacon, two groups of mercenaries land on the planet, one of them with a readymade box to carry Riddick’s head. And then Riddick leaves them a message scrawled in blood- take one ship for yourself and leave me one ship if you want o live. The mercenaries ignore the warning, laughing it off and the entire later half of the movie is a remake of Jurassic Park – with a small group of survivors being hunted by a vicious beast- only in this case the beast is the hero of the movie Riddick. In the end the surviving mercenaries do just what he ordered- they flee in one spaceship, leaving him the other- for a possible part 4.
I have been a fan of Vin diesel ever since his Fast and Furious days. He along with Jason Statham makes some of the most uncomplicated action movies in recent days- where the hero doesn’t need to justify his every punch with a cathartic sob story. As such, I have to say I liked this movie too. But if only the second half had been a bit better written I would have loved this movie. If you are looking for a mindless action film with plenty of thrills and chills -this is the movie for you. If you haven’t yet seen this movie, do go – there is nothing better running in theaters now to spend a rainy afternoon in.