Main cast: Arnold Schwarzenegger (Jericho Cane), Gabriel Byrne (Satan), Robin Tunney (Christine York), Kevin Pollak (Bobby Chicago), CCH Pounder (Det Marge Francis), Derrick O’Connor (Thomas Aquinas), Miriam Margolyes (Mabel), Udo Kier (Dr Abel), Victor Varnado (Albino), Mark Margolis (The Pope), and Rod Steiger (Father Kovak)
Director: Peter Hyams
End of Days is sick. Sadistic is what I would call it. Why are the Christian folks lobbying against Dogma? It is this crap they should be lobbying at.
1999 is here, and the Devil has taken over a man to go impregnate Christine, the lucky woman chosen to bear his child. Devil chose a man of Gabriel Byrne’s class – good taste. He chooses Christine for the receptacle of his demonic seed. Bad taste. Christine is the most passive, and totally useless shrieky heroine whose favorite word is “No!” screamed at the top of her lungs every ten minutes. Usually while she’s standing there, next to the villain, watching with wide-eyed fear as our hero Jericho is beaten bloody. It never occurs to her to run. She’d rather stand there and test her lungs, hoping maybe Satan bought a recording biz fellow along too, perhaps.
This movie pulls out all the cliches one can think of. A hero haunted over his dead wife and kid (he wasn’t there to protect them). Priests who, before plunging a blade through Christine’s heart, have to spend half an hour praying for forgiveness. All in time for the hero to break down the door to rescue our Shrieky Heroine, of course. You’d think God would understand if they give an abbreviated plea for forgiveness, say, of only five minutes? Let’s not forget the best one: Jericho gazes at the statue of Madonna for three seconds in the last half hour and miraculously regains his faith to defeat Satan. Only in Hollywood is life so easy.
Forget the mess of a plot and plot holes so wide one could fit a Mack truck through. For a story about faith, somehow the film makers forgot all about God. In this movie, God is one sadistic fellow who watches His priests get cut down in His own church. He never lifts a finger to aid even when His worshippers, broken and battered, went on their knees to beseech for divine intervention. Satan mocks Him, saying that He delights in watching His worshippers grovel and beg. If it’s something good, it’s God will. If it’s bad, it’s “God works in mysterious ways.” And this movie only emphasizes that. God is merciless, delights in our torment, and demands total sacrifices, this movie tells me. How nice.
And they’re protesting over Dogma? Give me a break.