Being a sucker for adventures in space, I simply had to check out Beyond White Space. It turned out to be a really strange B science fiction movie with surprisingly good visuals and incoherent storytelling. However, there’s something about it that makes it worth checking out. And that something is the whole Moby Dick in space angle. Yes, this is a movie about space whales. We’ll be following the crew of whalers aboard the starship Essex as they’re trying to catch these giant creatures. Sure, they call them space dragons here along with all the appropriate Chinese terminology but they’re still space whales. At first, I thought they would be better off if they opted for your regular giant space monster. Mostly because I felt the story is too boomer-oriented. However, after I’ve finished the movie and done a bit of research, I changed my opinion. More on that later.
For now, let’s focus on the important stuff. The first thing you’re going to notice about Beyond White Space is the quality of special effects. CGI here is excellent and planets, creatures, suits and everything else looks sleek and believable. Granted, the interiors are sometimes woefully amateurish like their mess hall. The cast is solid with formidable Holt McCallany and committed Zulay Henao. The storytelling is the biggest problem of this movie as it becomes too disjointed and messy after the first 45 minutes. The twists seem forced and characters act unnaturally. And pretty soon you don’t care about any of them. Luckily, we have space pirates, space crabs, and a couple of other things to keep us engaged. Plus, there’s the inevitable B movie charm that should convince you to check out this space oddity.
The year is 2132 and the crew of the spaceship Essex is slowly cruising through outer space. They’re on a hunt for a fabled space dragon Ten Lung and captain Richard Bentley hopes to find the same creature that killed his father some 24 years earlier. Revenge, however, is not the only thing that’s motivating him as the creature is extremely valuable. It travels through space by creating white holes that enable it to move into so-called white space. Richard has quite a formidable crew but catching Ten Lung will prove to be an extremely difficult mission.
After a familiar Blade Runner intro, we spend most of the time in the spaceship looking for space whales ending with a glorious and quite bloody finale. It features a lot of similarities to the usual ship movies like The Bounty or In The Heart of The Sea. The creatures we see in Beyond White Space are very similar to those we’ve seen in Star Trek or Futurama.
The episodes I’m talking about are the Galaxy’s Child and Möbius Dick. Not to mention the whalers of the Moon. They’re also present in various other movies, novels, and television shows. I dare not go into details on this one as it’s a classic example of a rabbit hole. Soon you’ll be looking at movies like Pinocchio in Outer Space and that’s not good for anybody. Just kidding, feel free to go all-in on this one. It’s just one Google search away.
Director: Ken Locsmandi
Writers: Ryan Colucci, Clay McLeod Chapman
Cast: Holt McCallany, Zulay Henao, Dave Sheridan, James Devoti, Jocko Sims, Kodi Kitchen, Mike Genovese
Fun Facts: Opens with the Star Trek tag-line “Space, the final frontier…”