This Is the End
When I saw the trailer for this movie I had no interest in seeing it. First off, too many stars normally means too many directions and too confusing. Add the fact with an R-Rated comedy sometimes they get so caught up in pushing the envelope with raunchiness they forget to be funny. To my surprise that is not the case with This Is the End. It was written and directed by Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg. It stars Seth Rogen, James Franco, Jonah Hill, and Craig Robinson. They all play themselves. Danny McBride is not listed as a starring role but when he shows up he’s the star in every scene he’s in. A few more people you recognize are Emma Watson, Michael Cera, Mindy Kaling, Kevin Hart, and Aziz Ansari to name a few. They all play themselves.
The plot is simple Seth Rogen picks up his friend Jay Baruchel at the airport. We see people calling him Seth Rogen so we know he’s playing himself. They go to Seth’s house and get high before going to a party at James Franco’s house. Jay hates the whole LA scene, doesn’t care for James Franco, and literally hates Jonah Hill. He doesn’t want to go to the party but Seth promises that he won’t ditch him when they get there but of course he does. Out of nowhere comes a series of explosions, earthquakes, and fires. As some people are pulled up into the sky by a blue light others fall into open pits of fire. Jay looks at Revelations in the Bible and determines this is the Apocalypse and the blue light is the Rapture. The actors are left to survive in the house and figure out why they were left behind.
What makes the movie so funny is we see these people like we think they really live. Hollywood stars that live a life of privilege with access to unlimited drugs, sex, and special treatment. At one point Jonah Hill says they should just hang tight until the emergency responders get there because they always save the actors first. They are forced to figure out how to survive on the limited supplies they have. Emma Watson shows up with an axe spewing language you would never expect from Hermione. Danny McBride, ticked off because of not being invited to the party, wrecks havoc on their food supply. There is a Demon possession.
And in the middle of all of this they shoot a home movie sequel to Pineapple Express.
Seth Rogen said 50% of the movie was adlibbed. Emma Watson was going to be in more scenes, but was uncomfortable with the raunchiness and didn’t finish filming.
Evan Goldberg made a game of asking each actor to do outrageous things until they reached a point where they refused to do that on camera. The only two people who never declined were Seth Rogan and James Franco.
This is a crazy mishmash of a disaster movie, reality show, comedy improve, and lesson on what it takes to get to heaven, all rolled up into one. It should not be anywhere as funny as it is. But for all the people who are trying to find something as funny as the original Hangover and have suffered the disappointment of the two absolutely unfunny sequels, this is the movie you’ve been waiting for.
107 minutes, Rated R for everything you can imagine, and couple of things you can’t.
My Score: 5 Buds