Tag Archives: Pitch Black

The Fast and the Furyon

After months of drip-fed stills, we’ve finally got a first look at the new “Riddick” movie in motion.

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It’s a teaser trailer in the truest sense of the word, clocking in at a brief 22 seconds, but no doubt acts as the outrider for a longer glimpse at What Vin Did Next – perhaps due in front of an audience primed and ready for the vehicular smack-down of “Fast Six“?

Whilst many an online movie outlet has been downright sniffy about the low-key publicity campaign that Diesel and longtime collaborator David Twohy have been engaged in – most updates on the project have come directly via Diesel’s Facebook group – I can’t help but feel that this strategy is a smart one which might be copied by any new media-savvy star.  Why not convert that millions-strong Twitter following into engaged consumers storming the box office come Friday night and the release of your new flick?

Films increasingly cost an absurd amount of money to make, and any way of engaging and reaching out to people who will get the word out to their friends and family about a new release can only help a film’s opening weekend in a marketplace which is more competitive than ever.  This third outing for “Riddick” is, after all,  a more stripped-down effort than the second film’s budget-straining, Sci-Fantasy universe building, so surely any attempt to intelligently engage with an audience who want to see the film has to make more sense than blanketing television channels with adverts that Tivo owners just zip through?

We’ll see who has the last laugh when the film opens in the US on September 6th.

 

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New “Riddick” film for September 2013

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When did David Twohy morph into Billy Bob Thornton? Did I miss a meeting?

Which is to say, the eagerly awaited (by nerds like me) new “Riddick” movie opens in the US on the 6th of September 2013 – it’s got a release date, IMAX makeover and everything!  Huzzah for monosyllabic, goggle-wearing anti-heroic bad-asses!

It’s a smart move as this date positions it in the early autumn genre slot which has been kind in recent years to the likes of the “Resident Evil” series and gets it out-of-the-way of the last of Summer’s heavy hitters – for example, the Matt Damon starring, Neill Blomkamp directed sci-fi actioner, “Elysium“, which opens in early August next year.

And, by that time, we’ll have had another slice of absurd automotive carnage with the latest entry in his other action franchise, “Fast Six” , having opened earlier in the spring, thus ensuring that Mr Diesel’s star has never been more in the ascendant.  Or so his people must be hoping – nobody wants to see more kiddie-skewing family comedies in his future, surely?  Let this man make an epic, geeky fantasy movie with a “D & D” flavour – there’s bound to be at least 5, maybe 6 other people on the planet who’d pay to see that, surely?

Trailer, please?

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New “Riddick” poster promises unexpected rom-com revamp

Psych.

The French distributor for Vin Diesel and writer/director David Twohy‘s return to the dark underverse of their anti-hero have kindly posted the teaser poster for next year’s movie, a random act of internet niceness which was brought to my attention by those nice Den of Geek folks in the first instance.

And you know what posters are the harbinger of, don’t you?

Trailers!

And as I truly, madly, deeply want some new Riddick action in my life, that happy trailer release day can’t come soon enough – if it’s not here with us by the end of next week, I’ll let Hagrid my Saluki/Poodle cross take me for a walk (Actually, that happens quite a lot, so it’s not really the role-reversal that you might imagine).

TL:DR version?  New “Riddick” poster. Pretty! Trailer, please!

 

 

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Yet more “Riddick” on-set stuff…

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Yep, that’s the galaxy’s surliest anti-hero Richard B. Riddick, as portrayed by this blog’s favourite action movie star, Sir Vin of Diesel, in a moment of on-set reflection whilst he shoots (and punches, and stabs) the new film.

Is it 2013 yet?  No?  Oh bugger.

If you head over to His Dieselness’ Facebook page (I know, I know, I don’t like this most ubiquitous of social media platforms, but what can you do when that’s where everything’s going down?), you can take a look at some more images from the third Riddick film and some of Vin’s actually charming and actorly digressions on filming, friends and this business we call show.

He comes across as some delightfully daffy combination of British theatrical knight, Sly Stallone-esque guy from the neighbourhood and that nerdy “D&D” player who somehow made it big and gets to do what he loves for a living.  And you’ve got to love him for that.

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A Vin Diesel fan writes…

Third time lucky?

It has been an occasionally lonely life, being an un-ironic fan of Vin Diesel.

I freely admit that there is no rhyme or reason to my enjoyment of work – I will essentially see nearly anything that he appears in, which means that I do own a copy of “The Pacifier”, which is a fairly twee family comedy that I’ve watched once and then sent to live on one of our DVD shelves, never to return again to regular circulation.

For the most part, my fandom revolves around the Riddick movies.  “Pitch Black” (2000) was the first DVD which I saw played through a home cinema system, and it’s one of my favourite SF movies of the last twenty years.  Dark, brooding, boasting a killer twist and a anti-hero for the ages in the form of Diesel’s character, Richard Riddick, “Pitch Black” is one of those films which I like to watch every so often, to help me keep the faith that movie studios will stop making ruinously expensive, wannabe-event flicks and go back to the idea of making relatively inexpensive, character-driven genre pictures.

Not pictured - a horde of slavering alien beasties awaiting your blood

That wish, of course, was somewhat contradicted by “Pitch Black” follow-up, “The Chronicles of Riddick” (2004), which eschewed small-scale, idea-driven genre concerns and went all-out to craft Diesel an SF franchise which would be his “Lord of the Rings” – a trilogy of pictures told on a bigger scale than the original film, a dark “Star Wars” with realistic characters contrasted against a grand galactic canvas.

Diesel's stand against studio interference went south quickly...

There are elements of “The Chronicles of Riddick” which work beautifully – the dark tone suggests that all concerned were going for a story which is heavily indebted to the best literary science fiction, the film’s future-gothic hybrid look is still quite distinctive seven years later and the cast (Judi Dench!) is seriously impressive – but the whole piece weirdly fails to cohere satisfactorily.

Genre ace David Twohy returned to write and direct but despite his involvement the film feels flabbier and unfocussed, presumably as a result of the film (and Vin’s) epic aspirations – you get the sense watching “Chronicles” that everybody involved wanted a piece of Peter Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings” action but somehow forgot that an F-bomb-fuelled, glumly-lit SF epic, full of bone-crunching violence and morally compromised characters probably wasn’t going to appeal to the widest audience possible.

Riddick, after all, is an unrepentant murderer and anti-hero – the mantle of galactic saviour was always going to seem like a bad fit.  The film’s insistence on ret-conning an elaborate mythology (Furyons!  Necromongers! The Lord Marshall!) into Riddick’s small, noir world never quite comes together – we never had a hint of this stuff in the first movie, so to cut-and-paste this small-time bad man into ornate throne rooms and despotic societies, presided over by aristocratic undead nether-gods, to position him as a Christ-like figure with supernatural abilities and make his character central to the fate of an entire galaxy is at odds with the smaller concerns of “Pitch Black”.

A boy and his (alien) dog...

It’s perhaps heartening, then, that Vin Diesel’s hard-won return to box-office success in the last couple of “Fast and Furious” movies has meant that Universal are ready to roll the dice on a third “Riddick” installment, with Diesel and Twohy doing away with the grand scale of part two and returning to a survival story akin to the first movie.

The art atop this post was posted by Diesel at the weekend, on his Facebook page, where he continues to post updates on his “Riddick” adventures, the next “Fast and Furious” picture (Memorial Day 2013, fact fans) and perhaps even the rumoured “XXX” threequel.   Where he was once eager to avoid sequels, he’s now happy to return to characters that his audience loves.

If it stops another family comedy nightmare for yours truly, I’m all for his return to the well…

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