> Volume 6 > Number 23


David Twohy

Vin Diesel
Alexa Davalos
Colm Feore
Thandie Newton
Karl Urban
Judi Dench

Release: 11 Jun. 04

The Chronicles of Riddick


Amped up to 11, the unintentionally funny popcorn film The Chronicles of Riddick proves that sequels to in which even the biggest fans lack much interest in resurrection are bound for disaster (look no further than The Birds II: Lands End). Picking up where Pitch Black suitably stopped, the character of Riddick (Diesel), badass extraordinaire, is on the run from bounty hunters evidently temping for the same organization behind Equilibrium. The inanities run amuck, cleansing the work of any intensity. Instead, this just feels like an actor going running through his lines, laconically showing off a physique to disguise his utter contempt for the script.

What I fear is that the disguise has become the preferred persona for Diesel, imagining it as some form of super-toned Mad Max. Instead, itís just boring, which is both a description of the character and the film. Segments entirely grafted by computers feel patched on without any consuming interest in telling the story. Like the worst of its kind, itís an action film existing only to blow things up, even if the explosions are only as warm as the heaters on the iMac that made them.

Itís a ridiculous (no pun intended) film that shows most of its cards early and just tries to at least give the audience enough to make sitting through painfully contrived sequences between Colm Feore (oh how the great have fallen) and Judi Dench that seem determined to turn this intergalactic pulp fiction into the beginnings of a massive series. David Koepp, the man behind both films, seems determined to realize his own massive, myriad sci-fi saga like Star Wars. But this doesnít even reach The Matrix levels of confused ramblings towards unattained genius. Instead, heís just got a Dune on his hands

©2004, David Perry,, 4 June 2004