Chronicles of Riddick (Director’s Cut) – 2004
I just got round to watching this film and last years’ Riddick and I thoroughly enjoyed them both.. I did see Pitch Black when it first came out but can’t say I enjoyed that as much as these two.. which are very different from each other.. but I digress.
‘Chronicles’ is a proper space opera with classical stylings and the pretensions of grandeur (It even has Judi Dench in it!) but doesn’t neglect the ass-kicking – mostly dished-out by Riddick the unstoppable badass protagonist.. Yeah, it’s all pretty silly but the production design by Holger Gross is very tasty as are the locales and this for me makes it stand out from a lot of sci-fi fare.
I love how the environments of the planets inform the situations the characters find themselves in – the searing terminator line on Crematoria, for example that they have to race from to make it to safety.. It’s probably missed by most but the volcanic landscape of that planet – shaped by the extreme temperatures it undergoes shows a level imagination only revealed in freeze frame.. I dig these kinds of things.
It got completely panned by critics but I enjoyed it – so there..