Pandorum is a 2009 German/American science fiction horror film written by Travis Milloy and directed by Christian Alvart. The film stars Dennis Quaid and Ben Foster. Filming began in Berlin in August 2008. Pandorum was released on September 25, 2009 in the United States, and on October 2, 2009 in the UK. The film's title refers to the fictional psychological condition of the astronauts in outer space.
Corporal Bower (Ben Foster), wakes up from hyper sleep to find himself alone, with no memory of who he is or what happened to the crew of the 60,000 passenger sleeper ship, Elysium. He proceeds to wake up Lieutenant Payton (Dennis Quaid) who is also suffering from amnesia. They are unable either to access the ship's bridge or to communicate with anyone else, including the three-man flight crew team they are supposed to relieve. With the ship wracked by power surges from a failing reactor, Bower assumes he must be a technician automatically awakened by the principal on-board computer in order to affect repairs.
While exploring the spacecraft under Payton's radio guidance, Bower talks with Payton about Pandorum, a psychological condition brought on by extended periods of deep-space travel and hypersleep. Its symptoms and effects include severe paranoia, vivid hallucinations, and homicidal tendencies., in which a single member of the flight crew, affected by Pandorum, jettisoned 5000 others in hypersleep pods into the oblivion of space. As Bower continues searching the ship, he encounters dead bodies and fast-moving humanoid creatures. Escaping from one of the creatures, he encounters other human survivors: Manh (Cung Le), a Vietnamese man working in Agriculture aboard the ship and Nadia (Antje Traue), who have discovered that the Elysium is something of an ark which, in addition to the human occupants, is carrying millions of samples of plant and animal life from Earth which will all be destroyed if the ship's reactor fails. Bower then informs them that he must reach the reactor and reset it.
The group encounters another survivor, Leland (Eddie Rouse), who tells them the tale of what had happened before they awakened: Earth, suffering from massive overpopulation, launched the Elysium on a 123-year voyage to a new, Earth-like planet called Tanis to create a settlement. When the ship received a message from Earth that it was about to be destroyed (either through war or natural disaster) and that they would be the last survivors, one of the three bridge crew members went berserk. After killing his other two crewmates, he awakened most of the remaining crew to torture and manipulate them. Those crew members who did not participate with the flight member's orders were banished to the hold of the ship and forced to scavenge in order to survive. When he finally grew bored of this he went back into suspended animation and left the rest of the crew awake. Genetic augmentations that the colonists had received prior to the mission to allow quick evolutionary adaptation to Tanis have instead caused them to adapt to the ship, turning them and their descendants into the cannibalistic monsters that have been feeding on the other sleeping colonists. Leland then uses gas to render the group unconscious. Upon awakening they find themselves in shackles, with Leland about to kill them for food.
Meanwhile, Payton discovers another crew member, Corporal Gallo (Cam Gigandet), who reveals that he was part of the flight crew that received the final message from Earth. He claims that his other two crew mates suffered from an onset of Pandorum and that he was eventually obliged to kill them in self-defense. By now, most of the ship's population is either dead or mutated. Bower manages to convince Leland to allow them to restart the ship's nuclear reactor. The group fights their way down to the reactor and Bower gets it online at the last moment, incinerating many mutants in the process. Manh lures away some pursuing mutants, but is eventually killed by one of the young of the mutants who have started breeding. While moving through the passenger hypersleep storage area, Bower fully regains his memories and comes to the realization that Payton is not his commanding officer. Payton also regains his memories and realizes that Gallo is a hallucinated manifestation of his own younger self, and that he himself is in fact Corporal Gallo.
Leland finds his way to Payton, but is killed when Payton stabs him in the eye with a sedative gun. Bower and Nadia also find their way back to the bridge, where Payton admits to Bower that he is Gallo. Payton retracts an inner bulkhead section on the ceiling above them to reveal a transparent outer bulkhead which looks out into a black emptiness devoid of stars. Payton then tries to convince Bower that he is the one who is actually suffering from Pandorum. In his confusion, Bower attacks Payton while simultaneously battling the symptoms of Pandorum. As they fight, several luminous fish swim through the blackness overhead, revealing that the ship had already arrived on Tanis, and after crash-landing, had sunk to the bottom of an ocean. The ship's log shows that in addition to the 123 years of spaceflight, another 800 years have passed since the crash; the mission has been ongoing for a total of 923 years, and it is now the year 3097. Bower accidentally causes a hull breach, and soon water starts pouring in, apparently drowning Payton.
Bower escapes to the ocean's surface with Nadia by entering and then ejecting a hypersleep pod from the ship. The hull breach causes the ship's computer to initiate an emergency evacuation, ejecting the remaining 1211 hibernating, un-mutated, colonists onto the surface of an ocean on Tanis, the new home for all the 1213 survivors of humanity.
* Dennis Quaid as Lieutenant Payton
* Ben Foster as Corporal Bower
* Cam Gigandet as Corporal Gallo
* Antje Traue as Nadia
* Cung Le as Manh
* Eddie Rouse as Leland
* André Hennicke as Hunter Leader
* Norman Reedus as Shepard
* Wotan Wilke Möhring as Young Bower's Father
Travis Milloy wrote a preliminary script which was set on a prison ship. The characters played by Antje Traue and Cung Le were inmates. Ben Foster's character was a non-prisoner who did not trust anyone. The producers gave the script to director Christian Alvart who was thunderstruck by the similarities to his own screenplay titled No Where. His dramatic story was about four astronauts aboard a settlers' ship who suffer from amnesia. Alvart decided that they should weld the two screenplays together, and the producers and Milloy agreed.
Pandorum was announced in May 2008 with Dennis Quaid and Ben Foster in lead roles. Christian Alvart was attached to direct the film, based on a script by Travis Milloy. The movie was financed by Constantin Film through a joint venture deal with subsidiary Impact Pictures. The partnership helped fund the $40 million production. Constantin drew subsidies from Germany's Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg (MBB) regional film fund, the German Federal Film Board (FFA) and the German Federal Film Fund (DFFF). The German Federal Film Fund provided $6 million to the production, the fund's second-largest 2008 payout after $7.5 million for Ninja Assassin. Filming took place at Babelsberg Studios in Potsdam in August 2008.
Pandorum panel at WonderCon 2009.JPGthumbrightBen Foster, Cung Le and Antje Traue talk about Pandorum at a panel discussion at WonderCon 2009.
Summit Entertainment is handling foreign sales and presented Pandorum to buyers at the 2009 Cannes Film Festival. Overture Films will distribute Pandorum in North America, Icon in the United Kingdom and Australia, Svensk in Scandinavia and Movie Eye in Japan. The film is set up as a possible franchise, so if it performs well Impact Pictures may greenlight one or more sequels.
The DVD and Blu-Ray release occurred on January 19, 2010 in the United States over Anchor Bay Entertainment.
The director and producer commentaries on the DVD indicate that a unrated version of the movie exists but has not been released.
The film received mostly negative to mixed reviews from critics. Review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes reports the film as holding a 28% approval rating. The site's consensus is that "While it might prove somewhat satisfying for devout sci-fi fans, Pandorum's bloated, derivative plot ultimately leaves it drifting in space." At Metacritic, which judges on a 0-100 scale, the film holds a "generally unfavorable" score of 28 based on 13 reviews. Science fiction magazine SFX was more positive, stating that "Pandorum is the finest interstellar horror in years", and awarding the film 4 stars out of 5.http Film Ireland also gave Pandorum a positive review, appreciating the film's synergy of cinematic techniques, set design, and developed characters. Audience reaction was mostly positive at website Box Office Mojo; their polls report that on a scale of A+ to F, the average grade cinemagoers gave the film was B+.
The film opened number 6 at the box office with weekend receipts totaling $4,424,126. , the film has grossed $20,213,552.
# "All That Is Left of Us" (2:43)
# "Pandorum" (3:58)
# "Anti Riot" (4:17)
# "Shape" (2:03)
# "Hunting Party" (2:48)
# "Kulzer Complex" (4:40)
# "Tanis Probe Broadcast" (2:01)
# "Scars" (2:20)
# "Fucking Solidarity" (3:28)
# "Gallo's Birth" (2:22)
# "Biolab Attack" (2:25)
# "Kanyrna" (3:22)
# "The Stars All Look Alike" (4:32)
# "Boom" (3:55)
# "Reactor" (4:08)
# "Skin on Skin" (3:21)
# "Fight Fight Fight" (2:56)
# "Bower's Trip" (7:51)
# "Discovery / End Credits" (7:55)
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