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End of Days
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
What's the story?
Once again Arnold Schwarzenegger has to save the world from destruction in this action movie. As the millennium draws near, so does the devil's one opportunity to bring about the apocalypse by impregnating a woman at 11:00 P.M., Dec. 31, 1999. The devil (Gabriel Byrne) arrives in New York City, and when a woman claims to have seen Mephistopheles, former cop turned bodyguard Jericho Cane (Schwarzenegger) must protect her from becoming mother to the devil incarnate.
Is it any good?
END OF DAYS is tired and tiring dud of an action film with a thin premise. Upon learning of the devil's plans, Schwarzenegger asks helpfully, "Is that Eastern Standard Time?" And luckily it is, so we can juxtapose the race to save humanity with the countdown at Times Square. The damsel in distress is named Christine, just in case we need a reminder that this is all deeply meaningful. And the good guys are straight out of a scriptwriting software package -- a disaffected former cop accompanied, of course, by a wisecracking sidekick.
Kids will want to see this movie because Arnold Schwarzenegger gets to fight the devil and lots of things get blown up. But parents should know that it is in the upper ranges of the R rating, with some gross-out violence, a sexual threesome featuring a mother and daughter, and suicide portrayed as an heroic act.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about some of the issues raised in this movie, including the theme of faith against force. They can also talk about whether it is right to sacrifice one innocent life to save millions, and the question of free will (one character sells his soul to the devil to stay alive and then struggles to do what he knows is right).
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