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Overall Rating

Awesome: 9.76%
Worth A Look: 25%
Average: 18.29%
Pretty Bad: 16.46%
Total Crap30.49%

10 reviews, 104 user ratings

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End of Days
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by Rob Gonsalves

"Arnie vs. Satan: how can you not like it?"
4 stars

Near the beginning of the entertainingly trashy 'End of Days,' the big bad guy himself -- Satan, looking remarkably like a translucent CGI blob -- swoops through the streets of Manhattan. Because this is a big-budget action-thriller, his arrival is heralded by exploding gas mains, exploding cars -- just a whole lot of explosions.

Satan whooshes around the city for a while before he spots a well-dressed man through the window of a posh restaurant, who very much resembles Gabriel Byrne. Satan chooses to occupy this man -- a Wall Street banker -- for no apparent reason except that he's Gabriel Byrne, man; he just looks so cool in that black coat.

End of Days is best seen, and enjoyed, as the ultimate high-concept crap: the main millennial event in Madison Square Garden, the fight of the century -- Arnold Schwarzenegger vs. Satan. Until it bogged down in a lot of clichéd hand-wringing about faith (as well as a batch of largely cheesy effects), I had bad fun with it. Schwarzenegger is Jericho Cane (check the initials), a bitter, alcoholic ex-cop whose sweet-faced wife and daughter were killed because he wasn't home to protect them from thugs; that pushes absentee-father guilt about as far as it can go. Jericho, it seems, used to believe in God until his dual loss taught him that God can be a real dick sometimes. The movie is set up so that Jericho must regain his faith in order to defeat Satan. (As usual, only Christian faith will do the trick.)

It's the last few days of December 1999, and Satan has travelled here for both business and pleasure: In the final hour of the millennium, he must impregnate a woman who has been marked to bear his spawn. That woman is the cutely named Christine York (Robin Tunney, a good actress who seems rather lost here), who has nightmarish apocalyptic visions; this being the '90s, she's on a bunch of medications under the supervision of priest/therapist Udo Kier, though if my therapist were Udo Kier, I wouldn't take Xanax or even aspirin on his advice. Jericho must find and protect Christine before Satan can capture her and show her his "oh" face.

Arnie is Teutonically amusing as always; this movie requires its own leap of faith, as most of Arnie's movies do -- that people can live and work alongside him without ever noticing that he's Arnold Schwarzenegger. (His standard unimpressed schlumpy partner is played here by Kevin Pollak.) And he's been given a terrific nemesis in Gabriel Byrne, who seems to take his cue from "Sympathy for the Devil"; an eminently reasonable man, Satan is witty and seductive, and Andrew Marlowe's script leaves out the usual rhetorical pomp. "We'll rule side by side," Satan promises Jericho. "It'll be so cool." The always engaging Byrne plays Satan as a guy who keeps himself entertained -- what good is being evil if it isn't fun?

Of course, we've seen 1,001 variations on this conflict; the bloated climax feels like a megabudget version of every season finale of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Part of the degraded charm of End of Days is its buffet-table derivative approach -- it's not shy about scooping a little Omen here, a bit of Seven there, and the movie's tone owes a lot to the fin-de-siecle paranoia of Strange Days. There's even a ridiculous helicopter-chase scene early in the movie that has practically nothing to do with the plot, as if this were a James Bond film, with Satan as the all-time diabolical villain.

'End of Days' is the sort of pulpy claptrap you might have caught as the second feature at a drive-in 20 years ago. As such, it has a certain shitheaded appeal: If you're going to make a big, goofy action-thriller about the millennial coming of Satan, you might as well hire Schwarzenegger and go all the way with it.

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originally posted: 01/13/07 08:37:02
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User Comments

10/30/16 morris campbell it rips of the exorcist & and rosemarys baby good effects though still it sux 1 stars
7/28/14 The Hammer Schwarzenegger crucified! Satan fuses a mother & daughter during an orgy! Devilishly Good 4 stars
8/29/09 the dork knight The Devil Pees gasoline? 4 stars
8/13/08 Shaun Wallner Great Action!! 5 stars
8/10/08 Bnorm I wouldnt have elected him after seeing this turd thats for sure 1 stars
10/24/07 Ivana Mann The best of the worst laugh-till-you-pee millenium "thrillers." 1 stars
4/24/07 Indrid Cold Byrne never actually does anything cool. Contrast with Al Pacino in Devil's Advocate. 2 stars
1/16/07 David Pollastrini saw it but have no memory so it must have sucked 3 stars
2/20/06 Ronin Horrible script from the purely logical point of view. Arnold OK, Robin Tunney v. cute. 2 stars
10/30/05 chris good film i enjoyed it fully 5 stars
2/11/05 Jeff Anderson All I could possibly say is, I liked it a lot better than STIGMATA & LOST SOULS! FUN!!!!!!! 4 stars
4/29/04 X Just terrible 1 stars
3/17/04 Brando FAH! 1 stars
2/10/04 Whatevr This movie caused my eyes to bleed 1 stars
11/29/03 john end of arnold 1 stars
9/10/03 Dreafre As a friday night TV diversion it has its moments 4 stars
3/04/03 Jack Sommersby Uneven and silly, but also very entertaining. A guilty pleasure. 4 stars
10/27/02 MarktheShark6 Hey, at least the soundtrack was decent, right? 1 stars
7/12/02 KMG When they say end of days they really mean end of good movies 3 stars
4/06/02 Junshi Um...I'm not sure I remember anything but errm...the plot is utterly worthless. 1 stars
3/29/02 Evan The Critic I'll go to church when I want to learn about the bible. Go rent Total Recall instead 2 stars
3/02/02 Alan Smithee Nothing but a complete pile of shit. 1 stars
1/14/02 Magnum Craphole The most embarassing thing Arnold ever did. Pure garbage. 1 stars
12/15/01 Cracked head One of the stupidest movies ever made. 1 stars
11/30/01 The $1.98 Pyramid Poor Byrne. What a fallout since "The Usual Suspects." 2 stars
11/25/01 Cookie Cutter An insult. 1 stars
8/08/01 Mr. Hat Not asgoodas I expected,but scary if U see it when 1st released.Past y2k,no scare no flare. 2 stars
8/06/01 badfish First i love Arnie.That said this was a big piece of stinky Yak dung! 1 stars
7/15/01 officer 412/l arnie you've past it. you are to old to be doing action movies and you cant act. 1 stars
7/08/01 Gracy Lionheart Pure Arnie Junk. I love action films, but this blew big time. 1 stars
6/12/01 Crisis Management This movie sucks, and Chef ADogg proves again he's a total idiot with no clue whatsoever. 1 stars
5/01/01 TNT-6 "This movie is shit" and laughing their ass off. That's how everybody was in the theater. 1 stars
4/23/01 Luke Arnie Arnie Arnie! 4 stars
4/05/01 hum wow this is dumb! Did the writters do ANY research? 1 stars
3/25/01 Monster W. Kung Arnie, what the hell happened to you... this one BLOWS DONKEYS! 1 stars
1/26/01 Diego Romero It´s just pure Arnie action 4 stars
1/17/01 The Terminator Probalbly Schwarenegger's most underrated movie 4 stars
1/15/01 Action freak Dark thriller, I liked it 4 stars
1/11/01 Jason Rowlands End of Days rocks! It shows that even the Devil can be outwitted. 5 stars
12/31/00 R.W. Welch Pretty well done villain, otherwise not much. 2 stars
12/24/00 bub you are all going to hell for comments like that!!!!!!!! 5 stars
10/27/00 JC23 I really enjoyed this movie 4 stars
9/27/00 Terrie Smith Arnie's done better but the film has its moments; good visual effects. 4 stars
6/22/00 Visc I don't care what other people say, this is a good movie. 4 stars
6/04/00 OS Oh come on, this movie isn't that bad 4 stars
6/02/00 Wafer too many gratuitous Arnold grunts and irrelevant alcoholism references 1 stars
6/01/00 Jimmy Could have ben better, but it was still pretty good. 4 stars
5/23/00 Monday Morning $50 mil for EFX, not a farthing for original thinking. 2 stars
5/21/00 mellemel Bad. Really Bad. 1 stars
5/19/00 Steve A great performance by Byrne, an entertaining flick 4 stars
5/15/00 Chrissy T Why does Gabriel never live to see daylight.He's the Devil.Let the man get some for once. 2 stars
5/03/00 matt entertaining movie, but not awesome, however extremely entertaining 4 stars
4/26/00 Leo Chef ADogg is right this is by no means a great movie but an entertaining one 4 stars
4/23/00 The Bomb 69 surprisingly enjoyable 4 stars
4/18/00 foxgroundcolt "easy with the hardware!!!" 4 stars
4/10/00 Bruce Not one of Arnold's great movies, but it was decent 4 stars
3/15/00 Lame-Oh GO SEE THE NINTH GATE 1 stars
3/10/00 movieman has it's highs and lows, but overall it was entertaining 4 stars
3/06/00 Captain Highcrime Hilarious to hear Arnie butcher the phrase "Glock Nine Millimeter." 3 stars
2/11/00 James Woodman Good solid return for arnie 4 stars
2/09/00 Ed Wood very enjoyable 5 stars
1/19/00 k.tomkowski Poor script. Arnie proves he cannot act. Byrnes is very good. 3 stars
1/17/00 Dirk Diggler i enjoyed it 5 stars
1/15/00 Marli I can't say anything about this movie 3 stars
1/13/00 henry hill I enjoyed this film 5 stars
1/13/00 heroinchic Come on Arnie! Back to basics. Stop playing the Goodies. Your boring unless bad 2 stars
1/13/00 master this is a good film 5 stars
1/12/00 dr.d i liked it 5 stars
1/12/00 dr.d i liked it 5 stars
1/12/00 dr.d i liked it 5 stars
1/12/00 dr.d underated 5 stars
1/10/00 Aiken Drum Its Arnie saving the world, what a guy. 3 stars
1/05/00 Joel Harwood Freaky 5 stars
1/05/00 Ian Rivlin Pathetic claptrap 1 stars
12/24/99 Stu Shoot me, shoot me now, please. 2 stars
12/23/99 Wafer I've never seen a worse movie & every fight scene was filled w/ excessive schwarzen-grunts 1 stars
12/23/99 Matrinka Oh god... I'd rather let Satan win than watch this movie again. 1 stars
12/19/99 Mr Showbiz Simply put... shite. 1 stars
12/17/99 Lame-Oh this was campier and stupider than the ad. Lies, lies, LIES! 1 stars
12/12/99 Obi Wan The Devil is the shit, Gabriel Rocked it!! Bruce Willis should have played Jericho 3 stars
12/09/99 Sher worst movie in the world..priests are so pathetic that they allowed Arnold to fight satan.. 1 stars
12/08/99 JonnyAngel Even after all the bad reviews, I relly thought I'd like it, but... 2 stars
12/08/99 majawat um, not good. Not good at all. But not painful at least. 2 stars
12/07/99 Cheryl Man, people TOLD me not to see this piece of shit and I didn't listen... 1 stars
12/06/99 Ami the wonderbread I just don't buy Jericho's "strength" at the end to defeat Satan. Whatever. 1 stars
12/06/99 Amy Lamest script I've ever heard, but Gabriel Byrne was good. At least it wasn't boring. 3 stars
12/05/99 Wojtek Arciszewski Reminded me of British cooking... some interesting moments... but over all a bland meal 2 stars
12/04/99 joe chip Its amazing what you'll agree to when you're on fire 2 stars
12/03/99 Kevin Way Cheesy. Boring. If you must see it, catch it on cable in about... two weeks. 1 stars
12/02/99 Carlos G. Lamas A Terrible Waste of Film and Time 1 stars
12/02/99 Roman A damn fun time 5 stars
11/30/99 Vaughn Allen Let's not get hung up on being cynical- this movie was fun as hell 5 stars
11/30/99 MickCollins The biggest piece of shit since "Spawn" 1 stars
11/30/99 Ryan Phillipe got hit by a car and it rules This movie was so brilliant. It truly moved me in ways a movie has never moved me before. 1 stars
11/29/99 George Nedelchev Good one-liners are not enough. Disappointing comeback for Arnie. 2 stars
11/28/99 Chet Patel this was one huge P.O.S. Arnie has gotten very desperate for a film. 1 stars
11/27/99 The King of the Bros I just liked it when that old lady kicked Arnold's ass. 3 stars
11/26/99 CATM The ending gave it a higher rating, but could've been better.Too gorey 3 stars
11/26/99 Lame-Oh could have been better 3 stars
11/25/99 Thomas, that wasn't even original in the movie... Byrne was fun to watch, & Arnold's old reliable, but there's an excess of jokeyness 4 stars
11/24/99 Ramsay With less action and a real actor, it might have been interesting 3 stars
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  24-Nov-1999 (R)



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