New Reviews
Django Unchained
Captain Corelli's Mandolin
Les Misérables
Chernobyl Diaries
The Cabin in the Woods

The Black Hole (1979)

A journey that begins where everything ends.

Rating: 6/10

Running Time: 91 minutes

UK Certificate: PG


Robert Forster is Captain Dan Holland, commander of a research spaceship called Palomino and her small crew of spacefarers and scientists. While examining a black hole, the crew of the Palomino discover a ship hovering on the very rim of the hole – a ship that has long been missing: the USS Cygnus. They board the Cygnus, only to find that it is seemingly crewed entirely by robots. The only surviving human on board is Dr Hans Reinhardt (Maximilian Schell), an eminent scientist who has been missing for twenty years.

Dr Reinhardt has a crazy plan – to enter the black hole and discover what is within. The crew of the Palomino are highly sceptical of Reinhardt's sanity, with the exception of Dr Alex Durant (Anthony Perkins) who is the Palomino's own resident eccentric scientist. Reinhardt is determined to have the help of the Palomino's crew, whether they are willing or not. With the help of his intimidating robot sidekick Maximilian, Reinhardt sets out to put his plan into action, and will take the others into the black hole with him unless they can stop him.

Released to take advantage of the sci-fi craze created by 'Star Wars', this Disney feature fails to measure up to its contemporaries. The effects were dated at the time, and would have been much more at home in films of the 50s or 60s. To make matters worse, they were often poorly executed – this is one of those films where you can see the strings attached. This is also an early attempt by Disney to make a film for a more mature audience, although they don't seem terribly comfortable with the concept – it is not really strong enough for mature audiences, yet some scenes may frighten the smallest children. That being said, there are flashes of brilliance to the film – the little robot Vincent (voiced by Roddy McDowell) is highly amusing while his evil counterpart, the intimidating giant robot Maximilian, is wonderfully creepy.

Features the voices of Roddy McDowall and Slim Pickens as the robots Vincent and Bob.

It's Got: The wonderfully intimidating robot Maximilian.

It Needs: Much more attention to detail on some of the special effects.

DVD Extras There are no extras with this basic release. DVD Extras Rating: 0/10


Atmospheric sci-fi, but with poor special effects and a more adult theme that sits uncomfortably with the Disney style.