Thursday, June 18, 2009
End of the Line (2007)
Young nurse Karen (Ilona Elkin) has had a rough night with patients behaving more oddly than usual and has had some startling premonitions (right off the bat we are treated to an unsettling scare). As she boards the nearly-deserted subway, a blond-haired freak harasses her, but good guy Mike (Nicolas Wright) tries to calm her frazzled nerves. Once on the subway, the train breaks down and Karen and Mike are stuck under the flickering lights. They are soon joined by a sweet old lady…but after receiving a message on her cell she tries to attack Mike with a knife made from a crucifix. Other people stuck on the subway are attack by people wielding these knives, as they are all members of a religious cult called The Church of Hope and by killing people they hope to “save” them from the end of the world. Karen and Mike escape and meet up with other survivors as they try to escape the labyrinth tunnels of the subway and reach the surface. Yet, what if the cult is right and death is better than what awaits them?
Filled with surprises, End of the Line is an overlooked horror film that shouldn’t be missed! From the beginning to the end the film is chock full of unexpected, creepy surprises that will keep you on the edge of your seat! Director and writer Maurice Devereaux has crafted an intriguing and entertaining horror film whose images won’t leave my head anytime soon!
I liked how Devereaux developed the cult member’s characters. They weren’t just smiling and singing automatons, but he portrayed their inner turmoil as well. Some of them just couldn’t go through with killing others while others had doubt about what they were doing. Some enjoyed killing and wanted to get their kicks before it was their time to go and others truly believed they were saving the masses from a much more terrible fate. The characters that did suffer a bit in character development were the protagonists. Besides Karen, we don’t know that much about anyone and so it’s a little hard to get fully invested in their predicament.
Still, the lack of the protagonists’ development didn’t damage the story as a whole too terribly. I loved how this is not just a “cult-run-amuck” flick, but something much, much creepier. I don’t want to give too much away, because the film is most effective when you don’t know too much about it, but believe me when I say that there are some jarring, unsettling moments where you’ll be thinking, “what the hell did I just see?” I also liked how Devereaux raises the issue of faith and whom (or what) people place it in. The only detracting factor with Devereaux’s writing is some of the questionable dialogue. Though there are some instances where he tries to ease the tension (like the infamous “I have to take a dump” line), it just doesn’t work and interrupts any kind of dread that had been building.
Despite some cringe-worthy dialogue, End of the Line is an incredibly effective horror film. There are shocking scares aplenty but they are never overdone. Devereaux capitalizes on the creepy factor when we get just a quick flash of something creepy-crawly under the stairs or a flash of someone (or something) down a dark tunnel. Plus, there are plenty of blood-drenched scenes, including a disturbing beheading scene as well as the death of a woman and her unborn baby. All these instances, plus the threat of the cult members, add to an every-increasing sense of dread until the chilling finale.
End of the Line is a little-seen gem of a horror film that definitely deserves more attention. Featuring plenty of thrills and chills, it is definitely worth a look!
Available from Amazon!