You'll Love Riddick ... or Hate It

Critics split on David Twohy's third Riddick installment
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 6, 2013 9:57 AM CDT
You'll Love Riddick ... or Hate It
This publicity photo released by Universal Pictures shows Vin Diesel as the antihero, Riddick, a dangerous, escaped convict wanted by every bounty hunter in the known galaxy—in “Riddick” from Universal Pictures.   (AP Photo/Copyright Universal Pictures)

(Newser) – Riddick is back, 12 years after he came to life in Pitch Black, but now the ever-muscly Vin Diesel must battle giant scorpions and bands of bounty hunters if he wants to make it back to his home planet. Directed by David Twohy, Riddick is the third in the series, but critics are torn as to whether its main character should live to fight another day, or be left to die on the dusty planet he now inhabits.

  • Rene Rodriguez at the Miami Herald isn't messing around, calling Riddick "a modestly budgeted bone Universal Pictures threw at Diesel so he would keep starring in Fast and Furious pictures. Those movies are bank; Riddick is rank." Oh, and then there's this: "Unlike good science fiction, Riddick doesn’t have a single intriguing idea or concept."

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  • Stephanie Merry at the Washington Post doesn't think it's so bad. "Riddick can be cheesy and silly, not to mention excessively violent, but it's also fun," she writes. "The story moves quickly along, and even when the outcome is plain, the journey remains entertaining. Diesel looks like an oaf but makes for a winning anti-hero."
  • With a headline like "Riddick is better off lost in space," it's clear that Claudia Puig, writing for USA Today, disagrees. "If only audiences, like the title character in Riddick, were equipped with luminescent extra-vision eyeballs. Then it might be possible to muddle through the dark and incoherent action scenes. ... Move along, there's nothing to see and no one to root for in this murky franchise reboot."
  • Evening out the field, Kyle Smith at the New York Post writes, "the movie jogs along nicely without ever getting a case of the stupids; far from being a bloated John Carter, it's just a pared-down yarn of survival: Die Hard on a planet." Still, he admits the "CGI can be laughably bad."
(Read more movie review stories.)

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