Left Behind: The Movie

"Terrible"

Left Behind: The Movie Review


Based on the best-selling novel, Left Behind is the latest in an assembly line of Evangelical thrillers from Cloud Ten Pictures. Considering the success of The Omega Code, there's a surprisingly large audience of zealots who dream of screening films with "spiritual value" nationwide. And apparently, all that hard work is paying off.

Let readers be warned in advance, if you're part of the camp which tries to catch the "so bad it's good" movies filmcritic.com cheerfully slams on a weekly basis (and I mean you, Battlefield Earth), do yourself a favor and avoid Left Behind. Even if your interest is akin to mine, approaching the entire affair as a postmodern joke, your contribution is paving the way for more of this generic, Bible-thumping crap. With this kind of marketing campaign, every dollar counts.

Having said that, I really wanted to enjoy Left Behind. The premise has all the makings of a crackerjack apocalyptic epic in the vein of Stephen King's The Stand crossed with The Omen. If handled right, this could have been the mainstream alternative to Michael Tolkin's chilling end-of-the-world melodrama, The Rapture.

On an international flight, half of the passengers vanish mid-air. This is not an isolated incident. Around the world, Christians have mysteriously disappeared without a trace. It seems the Book of Revelations has cracked wide open, and the newly departed are spared seven years of tribulation during the Antichrist's rise to global power. Those who have been left behind must struggle in the ultimate battle between good and evil, which will no doubt be further documented in the inevitable string of sequels.

Don't tell me that doesn't sound exciting, even to heathens such as myself.

My interest abruptly waned the moment a freshly scrubbed Kirk Cameron appears on the scene as opportunistic news correspondent Buck Williams. We're asked to buy Kirk Cameron as a hardcore journalist covering an international crisis in the Middle East? Named Buck Williams? When Buck places his camera in the middle "of the shit" as bombs burst in midair, it's difficult to shake the thought that this pathetic former star hasn't aged a day since Growing Pains. His behavior, his goofy smile, his curly locks of hair are all exactly the same. I guess some things never change, even after you're Born Again.

Buck pursues a conspiracy that goes all the way to the United Nations. Will he be able to warn idealistic scientist Chaim Rosenzweig (Colin Fox) that his "Eden formula" which could end world hunger may land in the wrong hands? Sure enough, there's a missing disk, a car explosion, an attempted assassination, and shifty men in black who plot Armageddon. These familiar genre requirements are as lifeless as they are predictable, shot with all the bland mushiness of late night cable television.

Indeed, Left Behind could easily be confused with less ambitious fare were it not for the preachy subplot involving the tormented pilot (Brad Johnson) of that ill-fated international flight mentioned earlier. When his wife and son disappear in the Rapture, he falls to his knees begging forgiveness. If only he had listened when Jesus was knocking on the door to his heart. It's not long before Buck joins him as a soldier in God's Army.

After the end credits scroll on Left Behind's home video release, Kirk Cameron provides a public service announcement encouraging viewers to tell everyone they know to see this movie. My only request for the Christians who happen upon this article: Don't settle for less. Go to the Left Behind website and demand quality scripts which address your theological concerns.

Of course, the built-in audience will see these movies whether or not they receive a critical bitch slap. After an initial release on video to spread word of mouth, Left Behind has found its way into the 20 top grossing theatrical releases during the week it opened nationwide. Let's hear it for the Almighty Buck.

Go Buck!



Left Behind: The Movie

Facts and Figures

Run time: 30 mins

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 1 / 5

IMDB: 5.1 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director: Victor Sarin

Producer: , , C. Robert Neutz,

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

New Movies

Colossal Movie Review

Colossal Movie Review

It's rare to find a movie that so defiantly refuses to be put into a...

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

King Arthur: Legend of the Sword Movie Review

It's unlikely that Guy Ritchie could make a boring movie if he wanted to. This...

Snatched Movie Review

Snatched Movie Review

It doesn't really matter that the script for this lively action-comedy is paper thin: teaming...

Jawbone Movie Review

Jawbone Movie Review

Boxing movies aren't usually this thoughtful. Sure, there are plenty of punchy moments in the...

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Whisky Galore! Movie Review

Scottish filmmaker Gillies MacKinnon (Hideous Kinky) remakes the 1949 Ealing comedy classic, although it's difficult...

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Alien: Covenant Movie Review

Master filmmaker Ridley Scott is back to continue the story 10 years after the events...

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

The Journey (2017) Movie Review

A fictionalised account of real events, this drama is reminiscent of Peter Morgan's work in...

Advertisement
Sleepless Movie Review

Sleepless Movie Review

In remaking the 2011 French thriller Sleepless Night, the filmmakers have dumbed down both the...

Unlocked Movie Review

Unlocked Movie Review

By injecting a steady sense of fun, this slick but mindless action thriller both holds...

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

Lady Macbeth Movie Review

A seriously impressive feature directing debut with a star-making central performance, this period British drama...

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 Movie Review

It was never going to be easy to match the impact of 2014's Guardians of...

The Promise Movie Review

The Promise Movie Review

The director of Hotel Rwanda, Terry George, turns to another humanitarian horror: the systematic murder...

Their Finest Movie Review

Their Finest Movie Review

Skilfully written, directed and acted, this offbeat British period film tells a story that catches...

Unforgettable Movie Review

Unforgettable Movie Review

With heavy echoes of trashy thrillers like Fatal Attraction, this movie overcomes its painfully simplistic...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.