Since I'm in a SF mood these days, I was looking forward to catching Pandorum on DVD, since I missed it on the big screen. Part of me is glad, and doubly glad that it was rented and not bought, but it's not all bad. I actually kinda liked it. I know, I’m clearly aiming for the middle of the fence so far!
The first 30/40 mins, when Ben Foster awakens on a dark, rotting and eerily silent spaceship, his memory foggy and confused, is engrossing, atmospheric and scary as hell. It's not 'jumpy' scary per se - just the thought that of waking up in such a horrible, weird situation really put me on edge. And the scene with Foster crawling through the ships internal, hot and claustrophobic ducts is awful (in a good way!). The true horror comes from the start. And the pulsing shakes of the ships death throes throughout the film add a delicate heartbeat that builds tension.
It’s the ‘mutant’ humans I don’t like. Only because they remind me of the blind mutant antagonists from The Descent. And that’s where the film loses its momentum – I felt I’d seen it before from that point, where the ‘bad guys’ where warped cannibals that had ‘adapted’. Very Hills Have Eyes etc.
Mind you, the twist of the ‘actual’ antagonist does save the plot, and the questions over Foster’s character throughout add something to the film – which I liked.
It’s not an original plot, but its handled well, and it’s a better than average Sci Fi, Horror, Thriller, which opened well and was fun to watch (as a horror fan). And Dennis Quaid was good in it too.
Exciting, if not predictable in parts, with a darkly atmospheric beginning.
3 out of 5 flesh-eating antagonists.