A film that ponders with the very idea of anti-heroes, Pitch Black happens to be so to say good enough that it expresses enough interest between action and sci-fi. Its an enjoyable ride that deserves its cult status. Its fun and at times imaginative.
Being a convict always means you get the worst of any treatment and will always have a sheer impact on how people follow you. Riddick is an anti-hero. On paper he is worse then anyone can ever imagine but can solely act in favor of those who despise him. A fixed vigilante with a personal agenda but the agenda can always be for the greater good.
Put into the future where there are tons of charted planets that look like deserts or so to say "moon surface", Pitch Black starts off in a space carrier where passengers go into cryosleep that takes a journey into a specific shipping route. Yes, these people are being shipped and Riddick happens to be one of them. Who is on his way to be sent back to the slam which is a fancy word for shithole or prison.
But in every film, there are complications and climaxes, so the only logical thing to do was to ruin the trip and crash land the carrier into a barren wasteland where there are a bunch of odd-looking aliens(who look like the original aliens) that hate the light but when in shadow will screw your day. Or to Riddick's own personal quote, "I'm not the one you should be afraid of". Yes, you are correct Mr. Riddick. Not to spoil but I have witnessed a man getting torn apart in mere seconds by just one of the beast.
The film does do a interesting job in portraying the atmosphere and creating a mood that settles in quite nicely into each situation. Tensions are involved, everyone's tired, and they all want to leave so lets just hurry and get it over with. Also, the idea of three suns with three different colors is just to me, witty. The scope changes from terrain to terrain depending on the destination and the magnitude of the planet is simply shock and awe. With colossal bones scattering the deepened wasteland and the ever so creepy tunnels that reside in the planet. Pitch Black offers a environment both creepy and exciting but is everything else okay?
And the answer is no. The dialogue can be sloppy and some acting could have been slightly improved but I believe Diesel moved along quite well and the overall experience was never ruined. As much of a sci fi thriller that it is, it is still in scope very weak when compared to lets say Aliens. It does present itself in a old school survivor tale kind of way but the whole idea gets kinda ruined when the deaths become so imminently bogus or cliche and the fact that the characters have little personality or overall presence. Also, the deaths are not all that amazing, even in the directors cut. Which is a shame.
And don't be to anticipated for action either because fist fights are not that exciting and firefights are limited because there is only one gun and is carried by a douchebag. But the night-vision glossy eyes and the brief scenes between Riddick and the aliens are fun enough to enjoy.
So much is lost in this film but the concept art and environmental design is more or likely going to be the savior and the fact that Riddick is a total badass just helps a little bit, despite hardly having any hoorah action scene.
What does make this film truly work is the character itself. Riddick's gritty yet calm attitude and being completely oblivious to the amount of harassment, just makes him that much better. The goggles, the muscles, and the attitude gets him a golden star which is good because this film lacked any solid character besides Riddick.
A lot of good can be had here but it doesnt quite fill the needs of die-hards. Casuals might find this more in tune but overall, the experience is just decent enough to allow one watch through and it sets a nice guideline for those who wish to make future projects related to Riddick.
In its own respect tho, it is a cult hit for obvious reasons. Riddick and the moon. Yup, he is that badass and the moon is that freaky.