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Pitch Black

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Released on the 2000-09-07
112 Minutes
Languages (original):
Arabic, English
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Their spaceship hit by meteorites and stranded on a desert planet with three suns a group of survivors has to fight the creatures awaking after a sudden total eclipse.

The movie opens in the 46th century, as a cargo spacecraft accidentally crosses through a comet’s tail while on auto-pilot. The ship along with 10 passengers survives a crash onto a strange, brightly lit desert planet. Due to the planet’s complex orbit among its three suns, there is perpetual daylight. Among the survivors are Carolyn Fry (Radha Mitchell), the ship’s docking pilot; a bounty hunter named William J. Johns (Cole Hauser); a Muslim Imam (Keith David) with his three novices Ali (Firass Dirani), Hassan (Sam Sari) and Suleiman (Les Chantery); a young stowaway named Jack (Rhiana Griffith); an antique dealer named Paris P. Ogleby (Lewis Fitz-Gerald); and two Australian prospectors, Zeke (John Moore) and Shazza (Claudia Black), and Johns’ captured target, a dangerous criminal named Richard B. Riddick (Vin Diesel) who (by some accounts) has had an illegal surgical procedure performed on his eyes to give him perfect night vision. Riddick manages to escape, and Johns leaves to track him. When Zeke goes to bury the bodies of the ship’s navigator and another dead colonist he is attacked by unseen creatures and brutally killed. Riddick is caught shortly afterward by Johns, and Shazza accuses Riddick of killing Zeke. At Riddick’s urging, Fry investigates a cave and discovers that a colony of vicious creatures exists underground, though fortunately they stay in the caves where it is dark. An abandoned mining settlement with a supply of water and a small escape ship is discovered several miles from the crash site, near a canyon filled with the bones of the planet’s ancient life (similar to Earth’s elephant graveyards). While exploring the deserted base, Ali investigates the large coring room. He awakens a swarm of smaller creatures and is found flayed. The crash survivors have a much more pressing issue, however. An astronomical model reveals that a month-long total eclipse of the planet is imminent and the survivors must escape before it begins and the creatures emerge. They must retrieve power cells from the crashed ship to power the escape vehicle. While they are retrieving the cells, the eclipse begins and the creatures attack. The group attempts to take shelter, but Shazza is violently torn apart by the smaller creatures during a dash for the wrecked ship. The group take shelter in a section of the cargo ship, until they find that the creatures have also found a way inside, when a pair of them devour Hassan. Johns shoots one of the creatures and upon inspecting the corpse, the group discover that the creatures are extremely photosensitive, to the point where their skin starts to burn when light is directed upon it. Electing to make a dash for the ship with the power cells, the seven arm themselves with lights and attempt the journey back to the escape vehicle. Riddick uses his surgically-altered eyes to lead through the darkness. While at first well-illuminated, the large, brightly lit fiber optic cables the group have wrapped around them fail when Paris panics and attempts to flee, knocking over the power configuration and extinguishing the light. Without the protection the light offers, Paris is quickly eaten. The six make their way to a large canyon, which in turn leads to the settlement and salvation. Riddick says that the entire canyon is filled with the “Big Boys” and that “The girl” is bleeding, turning to Jack. “Jack” admits that she is a girl, saying she thought that people would respect her more if people thought she was male. Now, unfortunately, Jack is on her menstrual cycle, and the creatures are tracking the group by the scent of her blood. Johns speaks with Riddick, saying that if Jack’s blood will attract the creatures, then maybe he should kill her and drag the body behind them as a distraction. This comment causes Riddick to attack Johns and they fight in a small circle of light created by flares. The fight lasts until the flares go out. Riddick sinks into the shadows as, without protection, Johns is eaten by a creature. As they enter the canyon it starts raining. The lights go out and Suleiman is grabbed by an alien and injured but Fry wards it off with a flashlight. They continue but Suleiman is again taken by a creature, too quickly for anyone to help. When most of their light sources are gone, the three remain in a cave while Riddick goes alone to the ship. In the cave the three discovers that it’s filled with glowworm like slugs and fill bottles with them. Armed with this Fry goes after Riddick. Impressed at Fry’s instinct and skill in finding her way to the ship, Riddick callously asks her to leave Imam and Jack behind. Fry initially accepts, but then overcomes her fears and pins Riddick to the ground, ordering him to help her rescue the remaining survivors. (During the initial crash, Fry had attempted to jettison the passenger compartment to save herself and the navigator, but was stopped by the latter.) Riddick then easily overpowers Fry and holds a knife to her throat, asking if she is willing to die for them. Fry states that she would. Riddick is once again impressed by Fry, and agrees to return to Imam and Jack, and the four then make their way to the ship. On their way back, Riddick has trailed behind and is surrounded by two creatures. Fry, who had made it back to the skiff, subsequently finds Riddick with a severe leg injury, and leaves the ship to help him aboard. The final death is considered a twist ending; Fry, who Riddick found himself attracted to and was protecting throughout the film, is suddenly stabbed in the back by a creature and dragged into the darkness while trying to help him. Riddick screams “not for me”, presumably deeming his life unworthy of being saved by Fry’s sacrifice. Riddick makes it back to the skiff to find Imam and Jack waiting. In a final stroke of revenge, he delays departure until the last possible second before engaging the engines at full throttle to incinerate the greatest possible number of advancing creatures. As the three are leaving the planet, Jack asks what they should say if they run into bounty hunters or other law enforcers asking where to find Riddick. He responds by saying, “Tell ‘em Riddick’s dead. He died somewhere on that planet.”

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