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They say most of your brain shuts down in cryo-sleep.

4 August 2011

I often have movies on in the background while I work. I tend to put stuff on that has nothing to do with the kind of story I’m writing, so sci-fi has been off the table for a while.

Last night, though, that wasn’t the case, and I got to re-watch what might be the perfect low-budget sci-fi movie.

I’m referring, of course, to Pitch Black.

David Twohy’s 1999 sci-fi horror just has so much going for it. The characters are well-drawn and distinct, the plot is simple but well done. All of the actors just nail their performances, especially Vin Diesel as Richard B. Riddick.

Oh, there are minor things I can bitch about, of course, like why humanity can master interstellar travel but can’t give Cole Hauser anything but a shotgun I could currently buy at any decent gun store. (Please note I have no problems with people using projectile weapons in sci-fi — lasers are a terrible idea — but come on, guys. Try a little harder. That gun is like filming Black Hawk Down with black-powder muskets.) But in the end, those minor quibbles don’t really impact the film, because everything else is so perfect. Well, as long as you pretend the sequel never happened.

So what factors combine to make the perfect sci-fi film? And just what is that film if it’s not Pitch Black? These are the questions I pose to you, my friends.

Oh, and please don’t say Skyline. That one was pretty awful.

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. 4 August 2011 0911

    I think any movie that has good plausability is right. Alien, with the “gritty” dirty “Tug Boat” Nostromo. That was believable.

    Another gritty real Sci Fi movie was .”Robocop” (no we can’t build cyborgs but… the rest of it was pretty good).

  2. 4 August 2011 1001

    The answer to the perfect scifi…IMHO Firefly/Serenity.

  3. 5 August 2011 2123

    I dug Pitch Black, too. In the past few years: Moon. And while I guess it’s not sci-fi to many, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.

    And my wife got me into Firefly…really liked that, too.

  4. PtTe2 permalink
    11 August 2011 2048

    I have to agree with SirGeek, Alien is great from all sides. There are many other really good movies, and I liked Skyline; the critters were neat. Anyhow, Serenity was also great, as was all of the Fireflies, although the two were very dissimilar. I suppose theres no monsters or anything but two other Sci-Fi’s that I think were great are Gattaca and AI. I also really like Sunshine (has lots of plausability holes in it, but it’s still very good). Well, I could go on but don’t even know if this will post.

    • 11 August 2011 2056

      I mostly kid about Skyline. It just wasn’t what I wanted it to be, and that’s fine — one thing I will give it was that it was pretty original.

      And Gattaca was great. I remember watching that for the first time and really digging it right when it came out.

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