Director – Maurice Devereaux
Cast – Llona Elkin, Nicolas Wright, Neil Napier, Emily Shelton, Tim Rozon, Nina Fillis, Joan McBride, Danny Blanco, John Vamvas, Robin Wilcock, Kent McQuaid, Robert Vezina
Release Year – 2007
Reviewed by John of the Dead
Every now and then we horror fans are given a great independent horror flick without the money-grabbing influences of Hollywood and despite the film’s low budget…still manages to do what many “bigger” films fail miserably at. End of the Line is one of those low budget films that gets things right. It is sad to say that this film’s low budget hinders it in some ways, and had it been given a higher budget, this film would have most likely blown away any trash that Paramount has to offer.
End of the Line follows Karen, a psychiatric nurse who’s patients keep mentioning demons and the apocalypse, as she heads home from work late one night. She boards the last subway train for the night and things get awry when a large group of religious fanatics onboard the train begin “saving” the passengers from a demonic Armageddon by killing them with daggers. Karen escapes the initial onslaught, and must now join forces with the remaining survivors and fight off the religious fanatics, as well as deal with the emotional consequences of the Armageddon taking place. As the group embarks on their mission to get out of the subway, they soon realize that the religious fanatics may not be wrong after all.
Writer/director Maurice Devereaux did a fantastic job with this film, in all the right elements. His direction is solid, providing some pretty creepy scenes/scares as well as directing the actors to portray the exact paranoia you would imagine people to portray in this type of situation. I really enjoyed the first movement of this film. Mr. Devereaux really set the tone for this film right off the back, and gave us some amazing filmmaking during this part of the film.
After the first act of the film is when the religious fanatic element takes control of the plot. I personally did not enjoy the film heading in this direction, as I was expecting to see an awesome supernatural flick taking place in the subway(you know I love films where the protagonist is stuck in a “nowhere to run” scenario). Although I did not enjoy this film heading in the religious fanatic area, this element was portrayed very well, and was at least interesting enough to keep me along. The use of the religious fanatics in this film was interesting, as they were “saving” the population from “demons” coming to symbolize the apocalypse. I liked that idea, especially when we actually see some demon action placed sporadically throughout the film. The look of the demons was amazing, and I’m glad Mr. Devereaux opted to go for live action effects instead of silly CGI.
The use of the film’s characters was unique, and provided a multitude of different personalities to keep us interested. We have characters who naturally clash, those who get along, and narcissistic ones who really don’t give a darn about anyone in the first place. All this works well in the area of psychological conflict, given these people really have no idea of the fanatics are right or wrong. They assume they are wrong…and that is what makes this film so great when the demon scenes come into play. I also must comment on the gore in this film…wow! I was left utterly impressed at the amount of gore I saw in this flick. This was no “Dead Alive”, but for an independent film this really hit the spot with scenes of people getting their heads bashed in with hammers and even a pretty realistic looking decapitation scene. Nice!
Because this is a really REALLY low budget film, you are going to have to keep an open mind when viewing this film. Some scenes can be a bit cheesy, but what do you expect with limited resources? I can understand a “big” film getting picked on for having bad acting/dialogue/special effects/etc., but an indie film? Yeah…you cannot hold an indie film to the same standard as a feature film. If you can look past slight moments of bad acting, and crappy props(the daggers, haha) then you not only know “how to watch a horror film”(yes there are certain rules for certain films), but you will be a better person for it as well. Give these indie filmmakers the credit they deserve. Yeah?
Overall, this is a great indie film that had it been given a bigger budget, would have put many other horror films to shame. It’s just a sad state of affairs to know that it is the insincere horror filmmakers that get the budgets the sincere horror filmmakers should receive.