Lumpen sequel to sci-fi actioner

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The Chronicles Of Riddick (Pitch Black 2)


Coming on the back of Saving Private Ryan and Boiler Room, Pitch Black encouraged critics to imagine Vin Diesel might be the next Arnie. In the four years since we have learnt to lower our sights. The next Steven Seagal, more like.

Pitch Black 2 takes up a notional five years later. Forced out of hiding by mercs (bounty hunters), Riddick is the last of the Furions, which puts him top of the hit-list for Lord Marshal (Colm Feore), leader of the Necromongers?a kind of thespian death cult. Bizarrely, Dame Judi Dench floats through proceedings as a kind of ethereal sci-fairy godmother.

Vin certainly looks the part-and sounds it, too. If mountains could speak, this is what they might sound like. Too bad writer-director David Twohy only supplies him with groaners like: “It’s a long time since I smelled beautiful.” The CGI production design is a handsome Deco-Roman Dune rip-off. But computers can’t generate excitement, and Riddick ultimately smells like stale goods.