t h i s i s t h e e n d
28th June 2013
Evan Goldberg & Seth Rogen
15th June 2013
We’re very much up for judging a film along the lines of ‘what did you expect?’ here. Check out our reviews of The Hangover Part III and Hansel & Gretel for instance. And it’s in this light that we tend to think about This is the End.
This is the End is pretty much the film you’d have made at college if you had the time, the money and James Franco’s house. The plot is pretty thin. Everyone plays a piss-take version of themselves as Jay Baruchel arrives back in an LA he hates to spend some quality time with his best mate from back home in Canada, Seth Rogen. After spending the day getting stoned and watching 3D TV, Rogen persuades Baruchel that they should head over to James Franco’s house for a party. A party full of people Baruchel doesn’t like and doesn’t want to spend any time near. As far as depth goes, that’s your lot - Jay and Seth having grown up together in Canada are now growing apart and this upsets their relationship. But then, this is not a film looking for depth beyond the massive hole that opens up in Franco’s lawn.
Once at the party, the pair skip out to buy cigarettes and treats and whilst they’re out, the apocalypse arrives. The actual biblical Armageddon. Complete with rapture and big beasties. The majority of the party goers are summarily killed off after not one of them is taken up by The Lord and the survivors gather in Franco’s house to try and see out the end of days. You see, nobody at the house was worthy of saving on account of them all being you know, Hollywood types. The religious overtones of the movie are pretty vague though, this isn’t an advert for any kind of organized worship.
Once holed up in the ridiculous mansion, the guys take an inventory and try to organize themselves, something that falls apart the following morning when Danny McBride wakes up from the bath and starts upsetting the balance of the other five friends. Chaos and lots of shouting ensues.
This is the End is a mixed bag really. It starts off very funny, especially the banter between Baruchel and Rogen, then it spins out into gross-out splatter comedy, through bickering relationships and eventually a fight with a very well endowed devil. It’s at its best when defiantly chewing on the hand that feeds it and when the actors are happily sending themselves up or playing deliberately against type. Michael Cera is fantastic as the coke-addled sex pest but disappears far too early and Emma Watson makes a great axe-wielding loon as she takes on the boys when she incorrectly thinks they’ve got a bit ‘rapey.’
The movie is taken from a short film ‘Jay and Seth Versus the Apocalypse’ and it shows. It’s clearly just an excuse for the lads to get together and have a massive laugh with their mates and it’s definitely twenty minutes too long (and it only runs to 107 minutes anyway). How much you enjoy it will probably depend on how hilarious you think it is to watch a bunch of man-childs kicking a recently severed head around the floor as they panic in their underwear. Or how funny you find it watching James Franco tearing into Danny McBride for masturbating all over his house.
This is a boy’s film, made by boys, made for boys and it will be enjoyed predominantly by boys. That’s not to say it’s misogynistic, the only real female role very definitely leaves the boys standing, it’s just that it is not really interested in girls. It’s the bromance apocalypse. With full frontal devil nudity. I have no idea whether I’m recommending it or not to be honest. I found some of the movie hilarious and I found some of it tedious – there are long sections where it’s patently obvious that the film has completely run out of story and has no idea where it’s going. But the boys are great fun and on the off chance you are left behind during the rapture, you’d have an awesome time with them.
Check out the trailer for This is The End here.