Pros: cast is excellent, great visuals and special effects
Cons: recycled & predictible plot that's been done better
In general I am a huge science fiction buff. The problem is that not all movies seem like they will appeal to the science fiction junkie appeal to me. For the most part I did enjoy the Alien series, in general I am not a fan of “horror in space”.
In the year 2040 a deep space research vessel, Event Horizon, was launched to explore the boundaries of the solar system. It disappeared without a trace beyond Neptune, making it the worst space disaster on record. In 2047 a distress call from Event Horizon is picked up. The ship Lewis and Clark is dispatched to check it out.
The truth behind it was the Event Horizon was testing concepts for faster than light travel when it disappeared. Dr. Weir (portrayed by Sam Neill) is the designer of the FTL device and is on board the Lewis and Clark. They locate the ship, seemingly dead in space, and get some strange an unexplainable readings including sporadic life form readings in a deep cold environment.
As some of the Lewis and Clark's crew explores the vessel, an accident occurs which causes that vessel's integrity to be compromised. They take refuge in the Event Horizon while attempting to make repairs, still unsure of what's awaiting them in the rest of the ship.
I can’t fault the cast for my tepid reception of Event Horizon. Laurence Fishburne and Sam Neill do an excellent job at the top of the cast list. They are backed admirably by Joely Richardson, Kathleen Quinlan, and for you Doctor Who junkies Sean Pertwee, son of Jon Pertwee (Doctor #3).
The problem I had was with the plot, which didn’t have the feel of being all that original. It's similar in many ways to Alien and its sequels. You have a crew in a confined space, exploring a vessel that experienced something horrific that you know is just around the corner waiting to devour them as well. Is it a creature or something else? That part of the story was interesting, but it just wasn’t enough to keep me riveted after seeing other similar films.
Then there’s the problem of predictability. When Captain Miller (Fishburne) comes across the fail-safe devices that allow Event Horizon to blow itself apart and Weir explains what they are, it's a huge tip-off that they will be used later on. There are a few instances like this, but this is the most glaring.
While the visuals and effects are stunning, it’s not enough to support a story that just has the feeling of being done before and better. The DVD has a bunch of extras for people who like that sort of thing. It’s not a film on my repeat viewing list.
• Commentary with Director Paul Anderson and Producer Jeremy Bolt
• The Making of Event Horizon
• The Unseen Event Horizon
• The Point of No Return
© 2012 Patti Aliventi