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Evil Movie Review: Pandorum

Welcome back for another action-packed, spoiler-riddled review from your favorite Evil Queen. Yes I am still sadly recovering from a bloody knee injury, but I am on the mend and getting lots of time to indulge in more fun science fiction flicks. This weekend the Veganaut and I tackled Pandorum, a 2009 film whose back cover sounded strangely similar to Event Horizon. I now bring you my review of this Denis Quaid featuring film.

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Like many science fiction, futuristic films about the human race we start off with a couple typed sentences on the screen explaining how in the first couple hundred years of the 21st century the human population ballooned and nearly destroyed itself due to a lack of resources. Luckily space travel had greatly advanced, and so missions were sent out with thousands of humans on board to travel to distant, earth like planets and try to colonize them. Our movie follows the 60,000 people aboard the Elysium, a spaceship being sent to the planet Tanis. The people aboard are put in to hyper sleep to make the journey, and the way that is achieved in this movie is with combinations of heavy anesthesia. Pandorum-horror-movies-11495482-500-333

Our film really gets started as two astronauts from the flight crew, Bower and Payton, awaken abruptly and find the ship stranded somewhere in space, the reactor about to give out. They realize they have been asleep for at least 8 years, and Bower must travel through the massive ship to get to its reactor and reboot it so that they can survive and make it to their destination.

What Bower finds on this ship is what makes this movie a horror film. Many of the inhabitants of the ship that were supposed to be asleep for long intervals have awakened, and the majority of them appear to be a humanoid deformed cannibalistic species. These monsters have been opening hyper sleep chambers and ingesting people, as well as torturing and devouring any unsuspecting humans that happen their way. Pandorum[2009]_011

Eventually Bower is hooked up with some other survivors, including a cook, agriculturist, and geneticist. The team helps Bower survive to restart the ship and Bower returns to the helm of the ship where Payton awaits.

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Now you might be wondering why the movie is called Pandorum in the first place, but that is a mysterious illness that is explained in the middle of the film. While Payton awaits Bower on the ship’s bridge another man named Gallo suddenly emerges from the ship and joins him. He tells Payton of a sickness called Pandorum, an illness induced by hyper sleep that causes psychosis. Now while they did not do a great job explaining this, eventually we realize that Gallo and Payton (Quaid) are the same person and that he was hallucinating his younger self. Of course, he is suffering from Pandorum, and his younger self came out of hyper sleep and released many other people that followed his cannibalistic, psychotic, and barbaric ways. These people were actually out of their chambers for generations, and mutated/evolved in to the creatures we saw on the ship. How did this happen so fast? Well firstly it was not just 8 years that they were in hyper sleep, but dozens of years. And secondly it turns out people were given an enzyme before boarding the ship to help speed their evolutionary adaptation so that when they arrive on Tanis they would be able to adjust more quickly. Being that these people were forced to live on the ship this backfired and is why they developed their huge eyes for seeing in the dark and grotesque, minimalist figures for surviving the depths of the ship.

I forgot to mention that our friend Daryl from The Walking Dead makes an appearance in the film...though brief...

I forgot to mention that our friend Daryl from The Walking Dead makes an appearance in the film…though brief…

That is the jist of the movie, but I will spend a little time explaining why I actually liked it, hopefully inspiring you to go watch it as well. It had an appropriate amount of suspense. Yes, some of the scary scenes were predictable, but it kept it just the right amount of scary for me. The characters were also a bit predictable for this scenario, but you nonetheless found yourself routing for them. The CGI was pretty. The twist with Payton’s hallucination at the end was just believable enough. And the end of the movie was in my opinion a happy ending, which sometimes I just need over a horrific, everyone dies epic ending. It turns out they were parked on Tanis all along, and were sitting on the bottom of the ocean instead of in deep space. So those thousand or so surviving people were able to get to the surface and start a new life, one without the horrors of Pandorum or cannibals.

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Posted on September 16, 2014, in Evil Movie Reviews, Features, Geekology, Horror of Horrors, Movies and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

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