Pandorum (2009)

<strong class="MovieTitle">Pandorum</strong> (2009)

(In theatres, September 2009) I had been looking forward to this B-grade horror/SF hybrid for generally nostalgic reasons: There hasn’t been any spaceship-monster-movie in a while, and I was starting to miss even dreck like Supernova.  But if Pandorum isn’t much more than a B-grade horror/SF hybrid, it’s at least a bit more ambitious than the usual “latex bug kills everyone” scenario: Subplots add up nicely until there are about half a dozen separate dangers threatening our protagonists, and while the conclusion is so stupid it burns, it does try something a bit more interesting than blowing the creature outside the airlock.  Sadly, getting there is more tedious than fun entertaining: Pandorum has an inordinate fondness for black-on-black color tones, and the pacing dwells far too long on the same pieces of soundstage locations.  There’s little connecting tissue between the film’s episodes, and that tissue disappears almost entirely during the lame shaky-cam action sequences that lift almost everything from 28 Days Later: Events in some scenes can only be figured out until they end, if at all.  No, this isn’t a minor space horror classic like Event Horizon, although the film has a few nice moments and both Dennis Quaid and Ben Foster both do well in their respective roles.  Pandorum does manage to fill its B-movie niche quite nicely, and has a few more ideas than the typical almost-straight-to-DVD feature.  Could have been worse, and it will do until the next spaceship monster movie.

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