Movie Review: Riddick

The thing you need to understand about Richard B. Riddick is that the man is a survivor.


He has stealth, strength and eyes that can see in the dark. You wouldn’t want him as your enemy.

Riddick is a lone wolf; always has been. He’s survived on instinct and did things that no human being should’ve done, in order to survive. I’ve been a fan of Vin Diesel’s Riddick character since Pitch Black came out in 2001. Riddick is quite the interesting character; he’s talented in many ways of combat and weaponry, which served him well over the years. He’s got a keen sense of being able to read anyone who crosses his path in order to know who has a true heart and who is a liar. He also has size as an advantage: the man is solid muscle and had the smarts to match. Anyone who’s ever met Richard B. Riddick and assumed that he was nothing but a muscle head with no brains usually ended up receiving his wrath or dead, as a result of making such assumptions.

In the third installment of the Riddick franchise, we find our anti-hero betrayed and stranded on an alien planet that is hostilMovies_RiddickPete and unforgiving. Almost ten years after he defeated the Lord Marshall, he assumed the role of being in charge of the Necromongers, not that it suited him. He’s always been haunted by the idea of returning to Furya. Perhaps that was his Achilles’ heel. Left for dead, our man has to find food, shelter and weapons, in order to get around this strange planet. It’s no easy feat; he quickly finds out which creatures can be tamed and which ones need to be decimated. Riddick has been alone for so long that when he actually makes friends with an abandoned pup wolf-like creature, you see a different side to him. An animal side. His canine companion is by his side, day and night. For once, we see Riddick as part of a team. Riddick suffered from some pretty bad wounds, but something like a fractured leg doesn’t keep him down for long. The man is thirsty, hungry, beyond weary and desperate to get off of this planet but hey, first thing’s first: treat his leg and train his pup.

Riddick is a notorious criminal and many bounty hunters have tried and failed, to collect the huge bounty on his head. He’s always one step ahead of them; playing mind games and being able to outmaneuver them so many times, that it’s almost pathetic to think that a bounty hunter could cage this wild animal. Riddick has become freakish strong to the point that he is immune to poisonous venom from some of the larger creatures on the planet. I don’t know about you, but you have to admit that inoculating yourself and your dog in order to survive is not only common sense, but shows a survival instinct second to none. He fashions weapons from the materials around him. He manages to cross the grassy looking hills in order to leave the planet. Emergency beacon, here I come! This action, unfortunately, pinpoints his location. And we all know what this means…company’s coming over!

Riddick stays aloof when he comes across a band of bounty hunters. Trouble is, not everyone in this crew is playing with a full deck of cards. The team captain is a little too trigger happy and some of crew members aren’t exactly honest. Santana is not the most charming man. He isn’t overly fond of meeting new people, either. That’s exactly what happens, because another crew lands on the planet with a leader by the name of Boss Johns. Does that name ring a bell? It should, because Boss Johns just happens to be the father of Johns, the drug addicted mercenary from Pitch Black who met a vioMovies_RiddickDahl-300x201lent demise. John’s second in command is a tough as nails woman named Dahl( played by Katee Sackhoff, pictured). Say what you want, but damn, the woman can fight. Riddick being Riddick incites a head game, making both crews very nervous and killing a few people off. Santana is forced to team up with Boss Johns, which isn’t exactly to anyone’s liking but at that point, nobody really had a choice. Riddick’s stealth comes into play, as he steals power supply nodes from these mercs, and makes it look like child’s play. What really bothered me is the way they ambushed Riddick and how Dahl shot his dog. THAT got me steamed. So, you can just imagine the kind of reaction that Riddick ends up having. Hell hath no fury like a Furyan scorned, I say.

Santana’s crew is a bunch of dirty, no good low life scumbags who don’t play by rules and could care less about anything except the money. I wasn’t too upset when Santana got his just desserts. Diaz, one of Santana’s men, attempts to kill Riddick. People never learn the right way. Riddick is not an easy target. Never has been. However, in the fight against Diaz, Riddick saves Boss Johns while wrecking the only hovercraft motorbike. Of course these other working things happen when you’re stranded on a planet, with people betraying and chasing you. These people don’t know who the hell they’re dealing with.

Boss Johns is told of his late son’s addiction to morphine, his cowardly behavior and untimely death. While Riddick is entreating Johns about his son’s past actions, they have to fight off an enormous horde of the demons that Riddick previously encountered. In the end, Riddick is wounded and Johns abandons him. I swear to God, Boss Johns and his late son are insufferable jerks. But that’s just my opinion. Riddick once again finds himself in a very undesiraMovies_RiddickPoster-202x300ble situation: abandoned on a rock cliff like ledge and fighting off those damned creatures. At the final moment, Dahl comes down to save Riddick and we know that our anti-hero is going to get his freedom. Riddick takes the other ship and gets the hell out of dodge. Just as he’s about to make a clean getaway, Johns attempts to stop him and inquires about where he’s headed.

Really? Do you really want to know, Johns? What possible gain would you get out of it. Common sense prevails; Johns decides that perhaps it’s in his best interest not to know. Riddick actually compliments Boss Johns, stating that he is a decent man. He flies off into the darkness without another word.

I think fans of the science fiction genre who have rooted for the character of Richard B. Riddick will find the third installment satisfying on many levels. It goes to show that you can’t keep a man like Riddick down for long. It also goes to show just how people really act during a tense or life threatening situation. The CGI is pretty decent and the pace of the movie itself is even. You get into Riddick’s head during the movie and understand his motives. You also end up feeling really sorry for the rest of the people that didn’t believe the hype surrounding Riddick. I hope that this is the final installment in the tale of Riddick, as the third time really was the charm.

Riddick debuts on Saturday, September 27 and airs into October and on HBOGo. Here is the trailer.

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