About Riddick.

An open letter to David Twohy, Director of "Pitch Black" and "The Chronicles of Riddick."

Dear David.

First, please refer to the following definition of an Anti-Hero, and explain to me how the actions of Richard B. Riddick fit that description in any form during the second installment in your attempted franchise.

In your first film, Pitch Black, Riddick is a confusing, intriguing character. He manages to be scary, mean, and sadistic. There is a hint of noble, but in a sick sort of way. The film becomes a story about second chances--how the redemption of Fry shows him a path to his own salvation. It's a stirring, promising concept. We could only hope that this lush, meaty character and the immensely 'real-feeling' universe you spun out of 60 days in the Australian outback a half a decade ago would come to life again in the sequel.

Perhaps we were hoping for a tale of how Riddick, now redeemed and struggling to rejoin the human race, faces trials and tribulations because whenever he attempts to act on his newfound nobility he is punished by the evil members of mankind. Perhaps a story of how he puts his combination of quiet power and fierceness to good use, protecting the innocent and, like Fry, not-so-innocent. Or perhaps a dark tale of him backsliding into his former murderous character.

But why on earth did you respin for him the same concept from the first film? Why did you imply that he was a different kind of evil, or a 'bad guy' at the beginning of this new movie? In the last film his salvation sequence is made quite clear. And the new movie shows no relapse in his character. So why play the same card twice? You said yourself that you weren't going to go back and re-make the same movie, yet that is exactly what you pretended to do by claiming that Riddick was back in the "Bad guy" role.

Yet there is no validity in this claim, because the audience gets a clue, from Riddick's very first scene--in which he doesn't kill a whole bunch of Mercs who are chasing him--that he's no longer an Anti-Hero now. He's not a bad guy. He's a good guy. If we weren't clued in then, we should certainly get a clue in the next major action sequence (where he risks his life for payback against a guy that killed some random innocent he abandoned on a backwater world five years ago). This is not the same character from Riddick. This character isn't a ex-mass-murdering ex-psychopath. He's just some slightly irreverent dude who is really good at kicking people's asses.

He is now become a very poor rendition of the hero-in-disguise concept. And this should not be confused with an anti-hero at any time.

Second, who the FUCK wrote your names for you? Evil Legions called "Necromongers?" The "Quasi-Dead?" A cold planet in a place called "the Frigidos System?" A sunlit world called "Helion Prime?" A hot world called "Cremetoria?" David, listen closely: A thesaurus is not a tool for inspiration. It is supposed to be a writing aide. Back away from it and try for some of the originality that the Wheat brothers showed when they wrote the story for Pitch Black.

Third: Shave. The goatee makes you look like a goat.

In summary, I'll put it in terms even Metallica would understand: Pitch black good. Chronicles bad.

Posted by Hello

Pitch Black Good             Chronicles Bad

Saturday, June 25, 2005


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