‘Pandorum’ (2009)

It’s unofficial, but the disappointment that was ‘Event Horizon’ (1997) now has a sequel.

The misguided mash-up that resulted in Hellraiser — in Space … by Executive producers Paul W.S. Anderson and Jeremy Bolt have now given us Alien -meets- Serenity -meets- The Descent -meets- Defying Gravity -meets- 2001:A Space Odyssey -meets- The Abyss -meets-Cube-meets- Sunshine, allowing the worst aspects of each film a moment for a pirouette of inexplicability.  3 of those 7 movies had serious story problems.

Like the 4 different posters in the movie’s advertising campaign, the PR can’t seem to determine whether the movie is science-fiction, horror or something else completely. While that combination might sound somehow enervating, the fact is that where those producers missed with their horror-fied remake of Andrej Tarkovsky’s ‘Solaris’ is exactly where this duo have missed with ‘Pandorum’. Pandorum starts out well enough, with an intriguing premise — two astronauts on a long-distance, deep space exploration awake suddenly, after an unknown duration in hypersleep, the side-effect being that they have no memories of how they got where they were or what their mission is supposed to be. The problem is, that seems to be the motivation that the entire production team was using when they put this movie together.

There are no ideas in this movie, unless you’re the kind of science-fiction fan who delights in trainspotting the plagiarized source material. The movie is neither artful nor postmodern in it’s presentation. Like Event Horizon before it, Pandorum is just reheated leftovers, a serving of refried beans, some of them more than 20 years old.

The set design is pretty good, the fight choreography is difficult to follow and Dennis Quaid and Norman Reedus ( Blade II , Mimic ) are wasted here. Save your money and share a meal with someone you enjoy spending time with. Have a conversation.

I could go on at length, but there are only so many hours in a day and I have other business to attend to.

Rating: ½ ☆ ☆ ☆ ☆

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