Pitch Black (2000) - Rotten Tomatoes

Pitch Black (2000)



Critic Consensus: Despite an interesting premise (and a starmaking turn from Vin Diesel), Pitch Black is too derivative and formulaic to fully recommend to sci-fi or action fans.

Movie Info

In this science fiction thriller, a spaceship is transporting a disparate group of people to a far-away galactic outpost called New Mecca. Mechanical failures cause the craft to crash-land on an abandoned planet that has three suns and no night. The only member of the crew to survive is junior pilot Carolyn Fry (Radha Mitchell), while the passengers who climb from the wreckage include a police officer (Cole Hauser) and the prisoner he's transporting, Riddick (Vin Diesel). As Fry and the other survivors survey the abandoned dwellings of the desert world while trying to decide what to do next, one of them is killed by a mutant creature living in an abandoned mining site. The vicious and bloodthirsty mutants, who live underground, have killed all previous inhabitants of the planet; they cannot stand sunlight, but research reveals that the planet has a total eclipse every 22 years, and the latest one is due any moment. Pitch Black was directed by David N. Twohy, who also made the sci-fi cult item, The Arrival. ~ Mark Deming, Rovimore
Rating: R (for sci-fi violence and gore, and for language)
Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy, Horror
Directed By: ,
Written By: Jim Wheat, Ken Wheat, David Twohy, David N. Twohy
In Theaters:
On DVD: Oct 24, 2000
Gramercy Pictures/ USA Films - Official Site


Vin Diesel
as Riddick
John Moore
as Zeke Ezekiel
Simon Burke
as Greg Owens
Les Chantery
as Suleiman
Sam Sari
as Hassan
Vic Wilson
as Capt. Tom Mitchell
Ric Anderson
as Total Stranger
Angela Makin
as Dead Crew Member
Show More Cast

News & Interviews for Pitch Black

Critic Reviews for Pitch Black

All Critics (108) | Top Critics (28)

A smart, suspenseful sci-fi movie from director Twohy, whose underrated 1996 film, The Arrival, also brought visual imagination and intelligence to the genre.

Full Review… | June 24, 2006
Time Out
Top Critic

Pitch Black is such a stinker that it makes Twohy's previous sci-fi thriller, The Arrival, look halfway decent.

Full Review… | February 5, 2014
Georgia Straight

A solid creature feature, but not at all a revelatory one.

Full Review… | September 11, 2013
Antagony & Ecstasy

Original Riddick pic is violent, with teamwork rewarded.

Full Review… | August 13, 2013
Common Sense Media

contains unpredictable nuances that make for thrilling amusement

Full Review… | May 11, 2011
Old School Reviews

...your typical run-for-your-life-the-monsters-are-coming science fiction adventure that requires one to park his brain at the front door of the theater before entering.

Full Review… | August 2, 2009

Audience Reviews for Pitch Black

Average action film starring Vin Diesel, that being said, I didn't expect much from Pitch Black, but I was pleasantly surprised. Although lacking in effective storytelling, this film boasts enough action to keep you interested from start to finish. The film is good for what it tries to accomplish, but if you're looking for a well structured film with a great story, you'll sadly be disappointed. The plot is decent at best, but it never is anything memorable. The film succeeds at being an action extravaganza and it is a fun and entertaining one at that. Diesel is good in the role, but I'll be honest, he's just not a good actor, but here he's more suited for these types of roles and he manages to have a good on-screen presence here. Pitch Black has its flaws, but is worth seeing if you enjoy mindless action Sci Fi films. The other performances are good, but not great, and the film relies on array of effects to really set the tone of the film. Pitch Black is good, mindless entertainment; however it could have been much better. With a few script rewrites, this film really could have stood, and be a memorable action film. In the end, it falls short of its potential, and never realizes what it should have been. This picture could really have a highly memorable movie, but due to a lacking script, a cast of average actors, it's a movie leaves a lot to be desired. In other words, Pitch Black is a film from a specific audience. I love action films, but I feel that despite its premise, it should have been a much better movie than what we got. As it is, it's mindless popcorn entertainment. Nonetheless despite its imperfections, I liked the film, and I didn't expect to really enjoy it. Vin Diesel fans will surely enjoy this movie, and the action is good despite everything else.

Alex roy

Super Reviewer


An exhilarating and heart-pounding edge of your seat thriller that's packed with big scares and pulse-racing tension. A tremendously entertaining and fiercely original sci-fi film. Vin Diesel gives a sensational performance, playing an engaging and brilliant character

Al S

Super Reviewer

A delicious Sci Fi suspense/thriller/action flick. Riddick's characterization of badassery really scores a lot of bonus points and the chemistry between him and the various cast members pulls at some humorous moments.

The plot isn't quite as predictable as one would expect and the premise makes a pretty original survival. The provocative moral struggles in the end are also something to behold. It's no Aliens 1 or 2 but it's definitely good enough for a watch.

Drake Tsui
Drake Tsui

Super Reviewer

Pitch Black Quotes

Johns: Zeke! Fully loaded clip, safety's on, one shot if you spot him.
Zeke: Don't tell me you're going off too.
Paris: What happens if Mr. Riddick spots us first?
Johns: There'll be no shots.
– Submitted by John P (2 years ago)
Richard B. Riddick: You're not afraid of the dark, are you?
– Submitted by John P (2 years ago)
Johns: Hey, I thought I said no shivs!
Richard B. Riddick: You mean this? This is just a personal grooming appliance.
– Submitted by Terrance S (3 years ago)
Richard B. Riddick: You got it all wrong, holy man. I do believe in God, and I personally hate the fucker.
– Submitted by Kris R (4 years ago)

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