Tag Archive | Apocalypse

Movie Review: Jeruzalem

Jeruzalem Movie Poster

Did you know that here on earth there are three gates to hell: one in the desert, one in the ocean, and one in Jerusalem? I had no idea, and I’m betting that Israel’s tourism board wants to keep that nugget of information on the down low; because it would surely be bad for business if word got out.

Unfortunately, no one tipped off Sarah and Rachel, two young American tourists on their way to a carefree vacation in Tel Aviv, who instead get a one-way ticket to the End Times in Jeruzalem, a new independent film directed by Israeli brothers Yoav and Doron Paz.

Jeruzalem Rachel Sarah Selfie
Rachel (Yael Grobglas) and Sarah (Danielle Jadelyn) Pose for One Last Selfie before Departing to Jeruzalem

On the flight over, the girls meet a sexy and charismatic anthropologist named Kevin (Yon Tumarkin) who convinces them to take a detour to the old city of Jerusalem for some historical sightseeing before continuing on to the serious partying in Tel Aviv. Sarah and Kevin hit it off, and Jerusalem is seemingly filled with all kinds of hot guys for Rachel to flirt with, so it’s kind of a no brainer. They plan to stay only 48 hours, but their second night in Jerusalem happens to be Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement, and that is when all hell, literally, breaks loose.

Jeruzalem Escape

While Sarah, Rachel, Kevin and new friends from the hostel where they’ve been staying make a frantic attempt to escape the walled city, it’s equally frightening to imagine that the Apocalypse will be documented via Google Glass, which, as worn by Sarah, serves as the first person-perspective from which the entire movie is shot (be forewarned that if shaky, hand-held camera movements make you nauseous, you might want to drop a Dramamine before the film even starts).

It’s somewhat distracting at first, especially when Sarah does one of her many face-plants while running after, or from, something, but the device serves to further the narrative in interesting ways; providing facial recognition, maps, Wikipedia entries, music videos, social media and panicked Skype calls from Sarah’s concerned Dad, which all get tossed into the mix.

I really don’t want to spoil anything except to offer that Jeruzalem features truly mind-bending moments of psychological terror (the scene where Sarah searches frantically for Kevin in a derelict mental institution is particularly unnerving), and more than a few instances where smart people inexplicably decline to run away when confronted with nightmarish physical horror, such as menacing giants and undead Monsters with Wings.

If you liked Cloverfield, you’ll love Jeruzalem.

Grade: B+

Jeruzalem opens at NYC’s Cinema Village on January 22, 2016, when it will also be available on VOD. Rated: R, Runtime: 94 minutes.

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Recommended Viewing: This Is The End

This is the End Poster

Hey what’s up. Remember that movie from last year, The Cabin In The Woods? That was awesome, right? Everybody saw it. But like The Crying Game, the thing about that movie was there were so many crazy plot twists that it was really best to go in without knowing anything about the movie at all. Such is the case with this new film, This Is The End, which I saw at a screening last night. Walking into the theater, all I knew about it was that I recognized a bunch of actors on the poster from various Judd Apatow movies. And I’m telling you, that is all you need to know.

This movie is extremely hilarious despite a not insubstantial amount of gross out humor, and the plot is completely original. So, I really don’t want to tell you anything about it, because I want you to be surprised! But here’s what I will say: This Is The End is about a bunch of actors (all playing themselves) who are friends in “Real Life,” being trapped inside James Franco’s Hollywood home when the Apocalypse arrives during one of Franco’s debauched house parties. What a great location to experience the End Of Days!

It’s funny that just a couple of days ago I was talking shit on FaceBook about what a douche James Franco is, mostly for being a pretentious doofus who has helped to ruin the reputation of all Contemporary Art by selling bags of air, or whatever ridiculous thing it is he does in the name of Art. Please give me a break. Despite the fact that he was really hot in the first Spiderman movie, and also Pineapple Express, and that movie where he plays the guy who has to cut off his own arm to escape from being trapped between two rocks, that looks pretty good, but other than that, he kind of skeevs me out.

This Is The End stars Seth Rogan, Jay Baruchel (you will recognize him when you seen him), Danny McBride, Jonah Hill, Craig Robinson and of course James Franco, plus there are cameos by every single famous person on the planet, including Rihanna (barf), who mercifully is killed off early in the film. The best cameo is by Michael Cera, who is the butt of a running joke during his brief appearance about what a cocaine fiend / sex addict he is. Hilarious! Anyway, go see this movie, because if you don’t mind a bit of projectile vomiting and incessant jizz jokes, you’ll laugh your ass off.  This Is The End opens in U.S. theaters on June 12th.

The Worley Gig gives This Is The End 4 Out of 5 Stars!

Recommended Viewing: The Day

The Day Movie Poster

If you’ve read Cormac McCarthy’s chilling, post-apocalyptic novel, The Road, or seen the movie based on the book, you will surely recall the scene where The Man and The Boy come upon an abandoned farmhouse in which they hope to seek shelter, only to discover that its basement is occupied by unfortunate survivors who’ve been unwittingly captured and trapped there to await, let’s just say for the sake of avoiding spoilers, a ‘fate worse than death.’ Now, take that scene, dial back the ‘grisly-mind-numbing-horror’ factor by about sixty percent, turn it into an “Old West-style” stand off and expand to 84 minutes and you have the basic plot of The Day, a new action/drama opening nationwide this Wednesday, August 29th.

The directorial debut of Doug Aarniokoski, The Day features a talented cast including Shawn Ashmore (X-Men trilogy), Shannyn Sossamon (Wrist Cutters: A Love Story), Dominic Monaghan (Lord of The Rings) and Ashley Bell (The Last Exorcism). It is the terrific acting performances and the unique character revelations within the limited scope of plot that elevate The Day beyond a rote doomsday retread best left to ‘rental’ status to a taught thriller worth experiencing in the theater.

Shot to great effect in a muted palate of grays and browns with only select flashback scenes appearing in color, The Day covers a 24-hour period in the lives of five people (two women, three men, probably in their late twenties) who are approximately ten years into life after an unnamed apocalyptic event. Daily life for these individuals centers on maintaining a near-constant state of vigilance necessary to avoid deadly encounters with that faction of humanity which has resorted to cannibalism in order to survive. With one member of their group gravely ill, bad weather looming and nightfall approaching, the group retreat to an empty farmhouse, but their hoped for safe haven turns out to be a trap set by those who would view them only as “meat.” As the small group band together and prepare to fight for survival against an unknown number of attackers, questions of loyalty and hidden agendas surface that blur the lines between just what separates the good guys from the bad guys. You’ll be kept guessing right up until the final shot.

Shannyn Sossamon is a very appealing actress and she is quite good in the role of Shannon, a woman struggling to maintain her humanity in the face of unrelenting loss and horror. The stand out performance here however is that of Ashley Bell as Mary; a newcomer to the group whose reticence and flinty exterior mask a tightly-capped well of emotion and fury. Bell’s Mary provides the fulcrum on which the entire plot flips and Bell proves herself to be a formidable action hero. She is a star to watch, for sure. While there is extreme crazy violence in the film, the lack of blood red on the color spectrum helps to mitigate the gore factor, while a few instances of truly original, brutal combat–level violence evoke great cathartic release for the audience. And that’s never a bad thing. For fans of The Walking Dead, Road Warrior and The Cabin in The Woods, The Day is highly recommended.

The Worley Gig Gives The Day 4 out of 5 Stars

What Are Your Chances of Surviving a Zombie Apocalypse?

39%

Despite my willingness to abandon all loved ones at the onset of a Zombie Apocalypse, it looks like I still need to buy a gun, a baseball bat, stock up on non-perishable food and learn how to blow shit up in order to improve my survival stats.

Direct link to Quiz: Click Me