THESE FINAL HOURS—-stomach-churns its way to us from some decidedly cheer-free folks in Australia. I watched it on an apocalypse bender with the woeful Goodbye World. I must be one of those folks pre-primed for End Of It movies (going back to On The Beach), because I, well—pay attention to the news….
In this bleak and brutal 2014 effort, cursing its way past in a thankfully trim 87 minutes, it’s a meteor that is incinerating the globe, one continent at a time (if it turns, it burns). Twelve hours to go, and Perth’s most depraved young adults decide to murder, loot, rape, commit suicide, and generally get it on and rave like there’s no tomorrow (‘cuz…).
Acting is good, and there are a number of effective views of the societal carnage wreaked before the wave of fire cleans the plate, but the script is so infantile that if you took away one key cussword (take a guess), it would be about ten pages long. Even people who swear this much don’t swear this much. LAZY writing from director Zak Hilditch—remember that name, so you can run from his stuff in the future (before the real hammer drops, in some form–it will, kids, it will…).
Do you really want to see a movie where a 13-year old girl (well-played by Angourie Rice, who looks and acts ten) is abducted and threatened with rape by two perverts, then is taken to a drunken rave party and slipped hallucinogens while everyone cavorts nude and violent around her? Lead actor Nathan Philipps saves her, and his character attempts some redemption before the finale. After all the depravity and blood, screaming and ‘acting moments of raw honesty’ (fill in your own self-serving director’s cut commentary on the gross soul-baring that the f-word-only script reeks out), the finale makes a visually effective but emotionally dulled payoff .
Little indie (cost $2,500,000) has some critical praise, and it holds attention, but it’s not much in the entertainment zone.
With extra bonus expletive-hurling from Jessica De Gouw, Daniel Henshall, Sarah Snook and Kathryn Beck (admittedly pretty hot).