Riddick-ulous again ★★★☆☆ 

When I saw the trailer for this, it seemed so much like Pitch Black, the first Riddick film, that I was disoriented: was it remake? Just as Alien 3 infamously outraged fans by reprising the basic scenario of the first film, so to does Riddick 3 reprise the scenario of Riddick’s debut: “marooned on a planet with swarming alien predators in the dark.” And they are just as biologically implausible as ever. And who thought it was a good idea to call it just “Riddick” when film #2 was The Chronicles of Riddick? The similarity of Riddick 3 to its predecessors is both good news and bad.

The good: once again, creative and strangely beautiful and quirky, populated with a surprisingly competent cast.

The bad: still exuberantly pointless and childish, another comic book of a film, a thin slice of some goofy space opera, with a plot as hollow and disjointed as the husk of a deformed crustacean.

In spite of myself, I do enjoy watching Vin Diesel, and Katee “Starbuck” Sackhoff even more (though her character “development” as a “lesbian” was total bullshit), and I’m always keen on well-rendered alien worlds and their denizens, however biologically ridiculous, and so I had a romping good time. But that’s all there was.