Screenwriters everywhere can rejoice in the vindication they may receive by watching “This is the End.”
The film is proof that movies need more than star power to survive.
Though the film is full of celebrities playing hilarious, exaggerated versions of themselves, the delivery is so atrocious that even a cameo by Jesus Christ could not save the apocalyptic comedy’s plot.
“This is the End” is an adaptation of a short film in the form of a trailer, “Jay and Seth Versus the Apocalypse.” Both the short and theatric films star Seth Rogen and Jay Baruchel and were both written by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg.
The duo is known for writing the popular stoner flicks “Superbad” and “Pineapple Express.” Though this is the first film Rogen has directed, it fits right in with previous films the pair penned.
Yet Rogen fails to impress in his directorial debut – the story moves at a glacial pace, and the thoughtless, eye-rolling ending leaves much to be desired.
The film begins as Baruchel and Rogen arrive at a party held at James Franco’s fort-like home, which his character designed. The party guests include Rihanna, Emma Watson, a coked-out Michael Cera and other celebrities.
While taking a break from the festivities, Rogen and Baruchel witness an
inconceivable phenomenon in which beams of light pull people into the sky and create chaos for those left behind. Not knowing what is happening, they return to Franco’s house to try to warn the others.
No one believes the tale until the ground begins to shake, and characters frantically run outside to find a demolished Hollywood landscape.
Through earth-shaking destruction, many celebrities are killed, leaving only Rogen, Baruchel, Franco, Jonah Hill, Craig Robinson and Danny McBride to take
refuge in Franco’s sturdy mansion. Left with only marijuana, alcohol and a few necessities, the six try to survive the end of the world.
Though the script is filled with the laugh-out-loud moments the audience would expect from such actors, they seem to write themselves into a corner, leaving the absurd yet abrupt ending filled with plot holes and theological gaps.
The six actors do not stray far from their normal acting ability, giving redundant performances, which may make the audience wonder if they ever acted in their previous films, or were they just portraying themselves every time.
A scene that is sure to please many fans of the band of comedians is one in which it remedies its cabin fever by creating a sequel to “Pineapple Express.” It’s also a scene that may make fans wonder if “This is the End” was a result of drug-induced boredom by the real-life group of friends.
Filled with hilarious one-liners and inappropriate humor, the film is perfect for a light night at the movies, and as such should have stayed away from the heavy topic of religion and the Book of Revelations.