Reminding us all that stardom today is inextricably intertwined with the possession of a successful franchise (or better still, a few successful franchises), Vin Diesel's Fast and Furious-driven comeback has also led to a revival of the formerly moribund Riddick franchise, with the third movie, simply titled Riddick, due out next week.
Where the two prior (live-action) movies are concerned, I found Pitch Black was the tighter, more carefully crafted film, but The Chronicles of Riddick appealed to me more, with its galactic empire milieu, sprawling story and the promise of epic doings to come on the way to and through the Underverse. Naturally I was dismayed when it was reported that the third installment would chuck the direction in which the series had been heading in favor of a story more like the first film--a response to the poor reaction to Chronicles, and the smaller amount of money the producers secured. (Riddick was made for $38 million, in contrast with the $100 million+ spent on Chronicles nearly a decade ago--maybe just a quarter as much in real terms.)
Still, one may hope that Riddick will be more than a mere retread of Pitch Black.
Coming Next Month: Riddick
In Defense of the Star Wars Prequels, Part II
And Now For Something Slightly Different (Maybe): The Summer Movies of 2014
The Late Summer Box Office (The Weekend of August 23-25, 2013)
The 2013 Summer Movie Season in Review
The Cult of the Film Star
The Return of Xander Cage?