I've heard about this movie many a times over the years but for some reason or another, I never got around to watching it. A horror film in space just sounded like an immediate recipe for disaster and when I found out that the incredibly one dimensional Laurence Fishburne was in it, it turned me off even more (seriously, does this man have any tone of voice other than slow and methodical?). So was it worth all the hype that I've heard, being an incredibly great meld of Sci-fi and horror? For the most part. The concept of a horror film in space was still a bit odd off as I have never seen it pulled off well (Jason X anyone?)
The movie stars Sam Neill (the head paleontologist dude in Jurassic Park) as a doctor who has constructed the perfect ship. Able to beat the speed of light, the Event Horizon can tear a black whole into space, catapulting the ship into its far reaches which were nearly impossible to get to before. Upon its maiden voyage, all contact was lost and no trace of the ship could be found. For years, questions of what exactly happened to the ship remained a mystery until one day, the doctor received a strange communication at his space research station.
Navigating their way through the outer limits, the doctor joins a rag tag crew of space explorers to retrieve and find out exactly what happened to the ship. The crew is atypically characterized (think The Matrix) in its range of personalities with Larry Fishy playing the hard headed and cynical captain.
Upon discovering and exploring the remains of the abandoned ship, weird goings on begin to happen. The doctor and members of the crew start to have visions and strange occurances begin to lead them to believe that the ship is a lot more alive than they thought it was. One by one, the ship begins to consume and destroy its newest crew members.
A cross between Solaris and Hellraiser, Event Horizon does a great job of creating atmosphere, claustrophobic uneasiness and just some overall good spooks. As the drama unfolds, we find out about the personal histories of the doctor and the crew, with the new lifeforce of the ship preying on their minds and fears. Are they trapped in some sort of hell? Is the ship now a real-life, living and breathing organism? What exactly was brought back when the ship tore its way through space? These questions and more, the viewer begins to ponder but they are never fully answered by the end of the film. A little frustrating as there is no clear cut closure and A LOT of the picture is open to interpretation. The dialogue is certainly campy but the overall story is so interesting that I side stepped it easily. On the whole, a film worth seeing with some genuine scares and lots of gory nuggets of goodness.
Cortez the Killer