Chronicles of Riddick: ‘You Keep What You Kill’

March 20, 2012 | Writing

Greetings Vin Diesel, Riddick, fans. I got caught up in NCAA, March Madness. Watched Norfolk State do some damage. VCU did well and maybe saying goodbye to their awesome coach, Shaka Smart, if University of Illinois, Champaign have their way.

But now back to The Chronicles of Riddick and the end of his hero’s journey. Riddick arrives on Cremetoria, much to the displeasure of the guards. The mercs don’t trust the guards and thus Riddick has the perfect opportunity to see them turn on each other. Riddick’s plan is to rescue Jack and escape. Campbell writes the hero enters a Special World “a dream landscape of curiously fluid, ambiguous forms, where he must survive a succession of trials.” That’s Cremetoria alright. He’s been in a lot of prisons and escaped from each of them, but this world is dangerous.

Which leads to Stage Seven: Approach to the Inmost Cave. Two places where Stage Seven occurs in The Chronicles of Riddick, Cremetoria and Helion Prime. Campbell writes the hero will encounter supreme wonder and terror. First Cremetoria’s prison is underground since the surface is close to a thousand degrees. Riddick is attacked by inmates when he first arrives, he defeats each except one. Jack saves him. She’s pretty lethal with a long, heavy iron chain. When Riddick follows her, their reunion is anything but sweet. Jack, the actress Alexa Davalos (soon to be seen in Wrath of The Titans), openly challenges Riddick. They trade dialogue from Pitch Black.

Jack/Kyra: “How do I get eyes like that?”
Riddick: “First you’ve got to kill someone.”
Jack/Kyra: “Did that, couldn’t find anyone for twenty menthol cools.”

At this point Riddick hoists her up against the bars. And she asks: “What are you going to do? Go for the sweet spot?” She slashes Riddick’s cheek and tells him her name is Kyra now, Jack couldn’t cut it and she’s a new kind of animal. Later Kyra is surrounded by guards and almost killed. Riddick comes to her rescue and kills one of the guard with his tea cup. The other guards flee. Kyra then fills Riddick in on how she left Helion Prime looking for him, signed up with mercs, was slaved out and sentenced to Cremetoria. Riddick is furious. He tried to protect her and she signed up with same ‘fake badges’ he’s been running from. After a gun battle between the guards and the mercs, Riddick seizes the opportunity to plan an escape. Campbell writes that this is a time for information gathering or getting ready for an ordeal. He says ‘gunfighters check their weapons’, Riddick tells the inmates he plans on outrunning the fire inferno rolling across the surface of the planet. ‘Don’t step up if you can’t keep up’, he informs them. The stakes are higher, but Kyra will follow Riddick so they along with four other inmates leave. As they race across the ground, the guards who are traveling underground toward the hanger where the ship is docked, take shots at them. One inmate is killed. They have to climb a mountain as the fire inferno bears down on them. Kyra is stranded and she pleads for Riddick to save her. He douses himself with water, swings out and reaches her just in time. Another inmate dies.

As they reach the hanger, Riddick senses the Necromongers have arrived. The hanger door opens, the guards meet the Necromongers and a battle between them distracts them from Riddick. Riddick, Kryra and the remainig two inmates fight a bloody battle. Riddick is shot by Vaako and left for dead. In the Director’s cut, as Riddick is about to be shot by Vaako, a Furyan warrior woman reappears and tells him he must avenge his people but first it’s going to hurt. She holds out her hand which appears to be burning and imprints a glowing hand on Riddick’s chest. Kyra has no choice but to escape with the Necromongers.

Stage Eight: The Ordeal deals with death and rebirth. “Heroes must die so that they can be reborn.” Riddick is left for dead, but he’s not alone. The Purifier remained behind. He pulls Riddick to safety and has the knife Riddick pulled from the back of the Necromonger that killed Imam. When Riddick comes to he knows Kyra has left the planet. The Purifier informs Riddick that The Lord Marshal wanted to strike a deal. If Riddick stays away from him, he’ll leave him alone. The Purifies reveals that he’s a Furyan. ‘We all began as something else.’ He wants Riddick to return to Helion Prime and defeat The Lord Marshal. The Purifier walks out into the blazing inferno to atone for all the evil deeds he’s done ‘in the name of a religion not even his own’ and burns up.

In Stage Eight, Campbell says the hero witnesses death. Riddick picks up the knife determined to return to Helion Prime. The villain also dies. Riddick returns to Helion Prime disguised as a Necromonger. Dame and Lord Vaako are surprised and frightened. Lord Vaako reported Riddick dead and was promoted. Whoops, a slight hitch in Dame Vaako’s plan. But hey she’s resourceful woman. She suggests they give Riddick a chance to kill The Lord Marshall. Her reasoning: The Lord Marshall is weak and should be eliminated. She adds that this should be done for the Necromonger faith.

Riddick attacks The Lord Marshall and discovers he’s turned Kyra into a Necromonger. The Lord Marshall offers Riddick a new life with Kyra. Riddick refuses, throws the knife and for the first time in a long time, The Lord Marshall bleeds. A fight to the death between them leaves Riddick at the mercy of The Lord Marshall until Kyra stabs him in the back. Wounded but still strong, The Lord Marshall throws Kyra against a spear. Vaako jumps down, ready to kill The Lord Marshall, who shifts out of Vaako’s reach, but materializes right in front of Riddick who stabs him in the head with the knife.

Riddick holds a dying Kyra, the last person who has sacrificed her life for him. As he sits on the throne he is surrounded by Vaako and the other Necromongers. He looks up expecting to die. Instead Vaako says: “You keep what you kill.” Everyone kneels. Riddick is now the Necromongers leader. Stage Nine of the hero’s journey is the hero reaping his reward. Riddick didn’t look too happy about his reward. Apparently we’ll have to wait for the sequel, The Chronicles of Riddick Dark Fury which is a working title, to see what Riddick faces.

There are three more stages in the hero’s journey according to Campbell. Stage Nine, Reward. The hero has overcome the Ordeal and for a moment at least savors victory. For Riddick he doesn’t have this opportunity, at least in this movie. Campbell writes that once the hero survives the Ordeal he is recognized as different, ‘part of a select few who have outwitted death.’ And Riddick has done this. So the question is: Now what?

Stage Ten: The Road Back. The hero has to decide whether to remain in the Special World or return to the Ordinary World. The movie ends on this question. What is he going to do with all these Necromongers?

Stage Eleven: The Resurrection. The hero is suppose to change. Has Riddick changed? Stay tune to the third movie.

Stage Twelve: Return with the Elixir. Campbell writes now that the hero has survived all the ordeals, the deaths of those he trusted and loved, they either return home or continue the journey. They move forward believing they are beginning a new life. So at the end of Chronicles of Riddick yes he’s about to begin a new life. Again stay tuned for what that new life will be.

Any dialogue any one want to share? Or comments? Cause this has been fun and next month I’ll pick another movie. Any suggestions?

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