Pitch Black

From Academic Kids

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Promotional poster for Pitch Black

Pitch Black is a 2000 science fiction film, directed by David Twohy. It stars Radha Mitchell and Vin Diesel as its anti-hero, Riddick.

Tagline: Fight Evil With Evil



Actor Role
Vin Diesel Richard B. Riddick
Radha Mitchell Carolyn Fry
Cole Hauser William J. Johns
Keith David Abu "Imam" al-Walid
Lewis Fitz-Gerald Paris P. Ogilvie
Claudia Black Sharon "Shazza" Montgomery
Rhiana Griffith Jack/Jackie
John Moore John "Zeke" Ezekiel
Simon Burke Greg Owens
Les Chantery Suleiman
Sam Sari Hassan
Firass Dirani Ali


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Opening title of the ship about to fly through a comet tail

As the film opens, the Hunter Gratzner, a passenger spacecraft, crash-lands on a strange desert planet. Most of the ship is destroyed; only 12 survive. Among them are a dangerous criminal (Riddick, headed for a new lock-up) and his guard, the surviving pilot, Fry, some Islamic men (settlers headed for New Mecca) and some other men, women and children.

Assessing the situation, they realise that the planet's three hot suns illuminate the surface continuously, creating the desert conditions. The ship's destruction has left them without food or water; only some meagre personal possessions including a stash of alcohol. Led by Fry, the survivors gather what little they have and set off in search of water.

The group is disoriented, scared and barely cohesive. This is no brave band of survivors; there are personality problems and arguments right from the start. Nobody is happy to discover a dangerous criminal among them, either. Riddick has altered eyes which enable him to see in the dark (an adaptation to prison mines he has done time in). However because of this light-sensitivity he needs to wear welding goggles during daylight (especially in the harsh continuous sunlight of this planet).

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The skiff

The survivors find strange boneyards and then lose a person in a bloody struggle near a burrow. Is the escaped Riddick to blame? Fry investigates and encounters strange creatures living underground. Riddick tells the survivors that they now have something other than him to fear ...

Near the boneyards they find an abandoned research base. This provides a water generator and some shelter. Even better, there is hope for escaping the planet, in the form of a small spacecraft (the skiff). But why is the base abandoned? An encounter with flying creatures kills another survivor. Then it is discovered that the three suns will eclipse each other soon, and not rise again for months.

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Return to the ship before darkness

The skiff needs power cells to restart its electrical systems, for which they must return to the ruins of their ship. But then the suns set — all of them. The creatures of the night begin to stalk the survivors in the dark. Now, Riddick is one of their most important assets.

Hiding in their ship with their only sources of light, they make a plan to take the power cells back to the skiff. Riddick, with his superior night vision, leads the remaining survivors through the dark. The group takes all their available light with them after learning that light damages the aliens.

En route to the settlement and the skiff, the group loses several people to the aliens with just four people—Riddick, Jack, Carolyn, and Imam—to reach the canyon just before the settlement. When most of their light sources (save a flashlight) are gone, the three remain in a cave while Riddick heads back to the ship promising to return with more light.

While waiting in the cave, they discover little creatures with bioluminescence. They put the creatures into a bottle and Carolyn makes for the Skiff. Carolyn finds Riddick in the skiff preparing to take off and realizing that he had intended on leaving them behind.

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Riddick's vision of the aliens

After a discussion and minor physical brawl, Carolyn talks Riddick into going back for Jack and Imam. On their way back, Riddick has trailed behind and is surrounded by two aliens. After an unseen fight, Riddick is found by Carolyn (who had made it back to the skiff and left to find him) with a severe leg injury.

During Carolyn's desperate help to Riddick in getting back to the ship, she's picked off by an alien and pulled away into the darkness.

Riddick makes it back to the skiff to find Imam and Jack waiting. In a final show of Riddick's true nature, he waits for the aliens to close on the ship and put the engine at full throttle to burn the aliens.


The film's sequel, The Chronicles of Riddick was released in 2004. A prequel, The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape from Butcher Bay, a game for the Xbox and the PC, was also released in 2004.

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