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End of the Line (movie)

A horror film by Canadian writer, director and producer Maurice Devereaux

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4 ½ Stars: Do You Follow Because of What You Know Or Because of What You Believe?

  • Jul 14, 2009
Rating:
+4

We have all seen the news, about certain religious people who have suddenly exhibited violent behavior towards others and even towards themselves. Such news often give me the shivers when supposed decent people become driven to exhibit brutal behavior in what they believe is the way to their salvation. Writer/director Maurice Devereaux’s “End of the Line” explores such behavior in a very efficient manner; all the while feeding our fears of the presence of evil. The film is a creepy, scary, thought-provoking look at what believers may say is eve of the end times. Just what do you do if and when your religious leader gives you an order?
 
Karen (Ilona Elkin) is a nurse in a hospital’s psychiatric ward. One evening, Karen takes the subway train on her way home from work. Without warning, the train stops to a grinding halt and Karen with the rest of the other passengers become the trapped targets of an apocalyptic religious cult led by Reverend Hope (played by David McCallum) bent on killing them all in the name of their strange god. Karen and the other passengers fight back, but can their feeble resistance stand up to the demonic powers that have cast a shadow this evening? Things look very bleak and all hope is about to be extinguished as the entire world seemed to have been gripped by madness. Is this truly the end of the line for humanity?
 
Maurice Devereaux’s very dark and bloody tale may have a very simple premise but he manages to call upon the screenplay’s best assets to keep the viewer interested with an intense, taut and gripping script that is well thought out and executed. We see the passengers in the subway train; people from all walks of life on the way to retiring for the evening and this proves to be the film’s minor characterization. Once Devereaux, manages to set things up, the direction goes into overdrive with a bloody, unrelenting experience that kept me enthralled for the film’s entirety.
 
Now, don’t’ think that the film is just a simple bloodbath. The film addresses certain themes of blind faith and references certain themes from the Book of Revelation itself. The film’s central focus are the followers of this religious cult who has been obviously misled, they use their blades fashioned from a cross to strike down any unbelievers so that they may know salvation. I said that the film references certain ideas from the Bible but I never said that this is a film based on Biblical apocalypse. Devereaux pitches an idea that a false prophet would rise first to pave the way for evil and I believe in this, since the devil would never come to greet you as himself but as a messiah. What is truly sad is when even children are driven to such extreme behavior. The cultists are also willing to kill others but they refuse to commit suicide. The screenplay calls upon an effective twist that involves this cult and the raising of hell’s army. After all, what better soldiers can be than those so devout to a cause?
 
Amid all its darkness and chaos, the direction admirably remembers to show a sense of humanity to our protagonist and even to the some members of this cult. The cult members are shown as having a choice when it came to the execution of their “duty”--Sarah (Nina Fillis) and Frankie (John Vamvas) had their orders but they chose not to follow. They are prime examples in believing on what feels right to their heart and never in the teachings of their so-called religion. One of Rev. Hope’s lieutenants is torn between his needs of the flesh and the need to make certain that he is ‘saved’. Two aspects of human trait/behavior is nicely fleshed out; choice and a need to be assured. Mike (Nicolas Wright) and Karen embody the openness to compassion, with the little time they shared, they got to know each other a lot. Sarah and her boyfriend somehow embody the idea that love can be shared between two people with differing beliefs, so long as their hearts are in the right place at the time. Sex is seen as a sin by the cultists, while some believe that it is the expression of love.
 
The film is also a bloodbath and there are quite a good number of scenes that are very graphic. The brutality and violence in the film may not be too hardcore--stabs, hammer strikes, extreme realistic violence are practiced by both the cultists and our protagonists. The violence may be graphic but none so stomach-turning and over-the-top. They all have that realistic simple feel, when terrified people tangle with madmen. However, the film does have a scene that is very unsettling which occurs in the maintenance area when an unborn infant is ripped apart from his mother’s womb. Blood and Gore is omnipresent in the proceedings, and director Devereaux cleverly utilizes old-school effects in the form of prosthetics and red ink. I do not like CGI in my horror movies and I commend the direction‘s sense in this case. Even the demonic entities who appear in the film are a product of a lot of muddy make up and simple prosthetics with glowing red eyes. One flaw that I can say about the film is the fact that the acting felt a little too uneven. Some of the acting by the cult members feel a little too fake and some scenes a little bit heavy-handed. Another is that the dialogue felt a little too contrived and obligatory at times. Not that it hampered the film too much, but it was enough to be noticed.
 
“End of the Line” is one very creepy and disquieting film. It portrays certain aspects of very real horror in the form of decent citizens driven to madness due to their own blind faith all the while using the occult and the supernatural as its driving force. It did somewhat remind me of “Prince of Darkness” but this film is much more. Maurice Devereaux knew exactly what he wanted to do with this film; the film managed to maintain its forward momentum that maintained its energy and outright creepiness--what also proves effective is the fact that he manages to put everything together with a large exclamation point that leads to the apocalypse.
 
When you feel a nudge on your shoulder to do something…do you follow because of what you know or what you believe? It’s something to think about…
 
Highly Recommended! [4 ½ Stars]

Special Thanks to QueenBFlix and Trashcanman for letting me know of this horror film!
 
 
4 ½ Stars: Do You Follow Because of What You Know Or Because of What You Believe? Dvd Cover

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December 28, 2010
Karen put me up on this one as well, although at the time I thought I had seen it already. Not sure why.
 
July 14, 2009
Ok, this is the third review I've read here on lunch for this film & I'm pretty stoked about seeing. This review just confirms once again that I am nowhere near the end of my list as far as movies to see are concerned. Thanks again Woo!!!
July 15, 2009
what'cha waiting for, bro? I will be ordering it real soon! This was good, great horror film despite its budget limitations. I am real easy when it comes to filmmaking--just make do of what you have and keep it grounded. Don't be overambitious like "The Unborn" and not deliver....You will like this one for sure.
July 16, 2009
I can already tell me by the reviews here & on ammie that this is right up my alley. I will prolly just purchase one sometime. I couldn't give one shit about the Americanized remake of A Tale Of Two Sisters or that crappy The Unborn. Sometimes less is more.... LOL
 
July 14, 2009
Well done, Woop! Glad that you liked this one since both it and its creator are a favorite of mine. I just couldn't help giving Devereaux a 5 though (whatever the film's imperfections might be) because of the low budget restrictions he's had to endure and the fact that he has managed to put out such high quality work when a certain bigger budget Hollywood flick which shall remain nameless (DRAG ME TO HELL, oops) gave us nothing new in spite of everything at Raimi's disposal.
July 15, 2009
Karen, I loved this movie! Yes, I loved it even more than DMTH. I was very tempted to round up the 4.5 stars to a 5, but I felt that I had to deduct a half star because of the acting and the dialogue which at times felt a little too contrived. I was VERY IMPRESSED as to how the direction took the film's premise to the heights it did, despite its measly budget. It was simple but it never lost its focused. Thank you for bringing this to my attention. I have my eye on "Night of the Creeps". I usually don't review films in this genre (you, trashie and Mackshere have it covered) but You asked me, so I will--I owe you for bringing this to my attention.
July 15, 2009
Its kind of a special movie because he didn't take the easy way out even though it took him an extra long time to find adistributor ecause of it. What did you make of Karen's half smile at the very end? I'm interested in how you interpreted that. Did you listen to any of the commentary track?
July 15, 2009
as for Karen's half smile, I thought maybe it was a sign of accepting the inevitable and perhaps a feeling of hopelessness. It may also be a sign that she gave in to what was happening--possession or maybe she was part of it all along? To be honest, I almost missed that possible twist.  what do you think, Karen? 

 I haven't listened to the commentary track as of yet, but I do have every intention of since this movie will be added to my collection as soon as possible! I cannot imagine Devereaux having hurdles in getting a film like this through...
July 15, 2009
I only listened to the last quarter of the commentary track, but I did watch all of the other bonus items--in fact they're the reason why I went back to the last part of the commentary. I wanted to figure out what I had missed the first time around. The weird smile has caused a lot of people to argue over its meaning and what it was exactly that was casting its shadow over her face. On the track Devereaux refers us to the scene where Karen and Mike are having their quiet time in the control center and says it explains the whole thing. Not really though as far as I'm concerned, although in another context it certainly does. I don't want to give anything away to people who haven't seen it. Know what I mean? I think the problems getting it through were probably due to rating because of the baby scene.  Remember both EVIL DEAD films went out unrated and ARMY OF DARKNESS got an R-rating!
July 17, 2009
The baby scene was sick and disturbing! This movie is now among my fave horror flicks I saw for 2009. I will have to check out the extras as soon as the dvd arrives by mail.
July 17, 2009
When I get 'em from NetFlix I usually forget to check out the extras because I'm in such a hurry to get it back in the mail the same day so that I can get another flick faster. But this time I made sure to go through a couple of them. I only had time for part of the commentary unfortunately. I'll probably be buying this one next month even though the used price is still pretty steep for me.
 
July 14, 2009
Not much of a Horror film fan but I´m always interested in the moronic behaviour of religious cults so I will check this one out.
July 15, 2009
Films about blind faith and moronic teachings always interest me. Please do check this out--this is a great horror film whatever your preferences may be.
 
1
More End of the Line (movie) reviews
review by . May 31, 2009
posted in Movie Hype
IS IT REALLY THE END OF THE LINE?
The writer/producer/director of the deliciously entertaining SLASHERS, Maurice Devereaux, strikes again!  It took Devereaux nearly two years to find a distributor for his 2007 film END OF THE LINE and this flick was worth the wait--it's a real doozy. While it might not be up to the high comedic standards set by its predecessor it's still a great piece of independent film making. It hits the ground running with a good and proper scare just to let us know that we're …
review by . September 09, 2009
posted in Movie Hype
Endings & Beginnings
   Every review has it's origins & I really should give a shout out to the Queen of Bflix for this low budget goodness. Had it not been for her, I dunno how quickly I would've come across Devereaux's latest but am very grateful to her for introducing what may be my new favorite film (or at least hot cult item) this summer.  I would also like to extend a serious round of applause to Trashie and Woo for giving this film it's due praise as well as writing …
Quick Tip by . May 01, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Caption
Apocalyptic horror flick from Maurice Devereaux ranks as one of the best flix of the decade.
Quick Tip by . February 15, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Caption
Combines religious fanatics with the subway system, always a winning combination when you're talking about apocalyptic horror.
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Maurice Devereaux (writer)

In this unsettling and creepy thriller, Karen (Ilona Elkin), a young nurse who works in a psychiatric ward, boards the last subway train of the night only to have it stop suddenly in the middle of the tunnel. As those around her are brutally murdered, Karen and a handful of survivors must face supernatural forces, homicidal religious cult members, as well as their own fears and suspicions of Armageddon, in order to survive.
 

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Genre: Horror, slasher
DVD Release Date: May 5, 2009
Runtime: 95 minutes

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