Riddick Trilogy DVD collection review
I am mostly comparing this to the Special Edition DVD of Pitch Black. I especially wish to determine differences in features and special features.
Extras are as follows:DISC ONE, PART ONE: PITCH BLACKCommentary with David Twohy, Vin Diesel, and Cole Hauser
A standard, convivial commentary in which the two male leads trade jokes about how cold it was and the director tries to fill in bits of technical detail. Their mutual wit justifies a listen, especially when Diesel discusses the many uncomfortable things his character had to do.Commentary with David Twohy, Producer Tom Engelman and Visual Effects Supervisor Peter Chiang
This more technical commentary is somehow that much more joke-laden, though it does get into the nitty-gritty of how things were shot and why. Engleman and Chiang, perhaps surprisingly, are the ones doing most of the cutting-up.The Johns Chase Log
An interactive feature that allows you to read and to listen to William Johns’ notes on the chase for Riddick. It’s pretty dull stuff but liberally dosed with profanity to keep you interested.“The Making of Pitch Black“ (5 mins.)
Standard EPK bull complete with micro-minuscule sound bites and blink-and-you’ll-miss-’em clips from the film. No real information imparted.“Dark Fury: Advancing the Arc” (2 mins.)
An even shorter and less edifying promo for the animated sidetrack, with Peter Chung talking guff about the challenge of using pre-existing characters. Skip it, life is too precious.The Chronicles of Riddick Visual Encyclopedia
Another interactive glossary illuminating the terms “slam,” “merc” and “orrery,” none of which come as any surprise to those who have seen Pitch Black and possess an IQ above twelve.A View into the Dark (4 mins.)
This looks forward to The Chronicles of Riddick (many of these supplements are recycled from Pitch Black‘s pre-The Chronicles of Riddick tie-in release) but pretty much repeats the formula of the making-of with the usual glad-handing about how everybody can identify with Riddick. Again, no real useful info.DISC ONE, PART TWO: DARK FURY“From Pitch Black to The Chronicles of Riddick: Bridging the Gap” (8 mins.)
Several parties (including Twohy and Diesel) explain that a bridge was needed to link the early film to the later one; nobody points out that Dark Fury doesn’t really do this, but never mind. Writer Brett Matthews and director Peter Chung neverthless reveal a few choice tidbits, not that the finished product was worth chewing over.“Peter Chung: The Mind of an Animator” (5 mins.)
This is a far more in-depth talk with the “Aeon Flux” creator, but while he’s very articulate and smart, he talks in vague generalities like most other special-feature talking heads. That said, the piece is remarkably free of the cloying gush that usually marks these things.“Into the Light” (5 mins.)
More cross-promotional hoo-ha about the impending release of The Chronicles of Riddick. Diesel and Twohy explain it was interest in the character–and not commercial expediency–that changed the would-be franchise’s direction from sci-fi horror to sci-fi adventure. About what you’d expect.DISC TWO: THE CHRONICLES OF RIDDICKCommentary with David Twohy, Alexa Davalos, and Karl Urban
Twohy comes off as bright as ever as he launches into exegesis for The Chronicles of Riddick, helpfully pointing out which scenes were cut from the theatrical version in addition to providing hugely convoluted rationales for artistic choices that barely register. While Davalos and Urban would appear to be flummoxed by the format, Twohy helps keep us engaged.Deleted Scenes (8 mins.)
Three clips, including: a) a wisely-excised exposition scene with Elemental Judi Dench explaining why the Necromongers must be stopped; b) the original capture-of-Riddick sequence that was reshot for increased drama; and c) Toombs’ untimely demise during the race to escape Crematoria. With optional Twohy commentary.Virtual Guide to The Chronicles of Riddick
Another entirely superfluous interactive glossary, although this one will sometimes give you the choice of two characters to explain ten places and people in the Riddick universe.“Toombs’ Chase Diary” (10 mins.)
Merc Toombs talks big from a computer screen and annoys the hell out of you with his jabbering about how he’s going to take down Riddick. A big waste of time.Riddick Insider
A pop-up trivia option that can be used while watching the movie. Alas, much of this is totally needless background information (“The four faces on the Lord Marshall’s mask represent his all-seeing astral eyes”). Though fanboys will swoon, mostly it just gets in the way of enjoying the sensual array offered by the film itself.Riddick’s Worlds
Interactive 360-degree views of eight of the film’s sets, with appropriately ominous Graeme Revell music. I don’t exactly see the point, but it’s nice to see the sets with the studio ceilings visible and much empty space in front. Kicks off with Diesel offering hyperbolic accounts of their awesome might.–Travis Mackenzie Hoover
Obviously I ignored the following:
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