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|Index||212 reviews in total|
I found this film by chance, without having heard anything about it, so
I went in with no expectations. But I love me a good apocalyptic flick,
even though most are very predictable. This one is not predictable. And
even though the setting is after the apocalypse, the story is really
about human nature, a la Lord of the Flies.
The peoples reactions to the events, and to each other, are extreme, yet believable. The acting is very good, among the best i've seen lately in a sci-fi picture. Yet it was the writing that truly took me in. The story is paced very evenly, and proceeds towards it's inevitable conclusion without pause or remorse.
I have to say that this movie is not for children or even most adults. There are strong elements of violence and sexuality that are far beyond what most people can stomach. With this in mind, however, I found the psychological elements to be far more disturbing than the graphic scenes. We don't like to think that people are capable of certain things, but in extreme conditions people can be pushed to do the unimaginable.
This is the the important point of the film, rather than the storyline, or "how the world ends". It's about how we can self destruct, as individuals.
While I will be disturbed by the imagery for a few days, I really still loved this movie, and recommend it to anyone with a strong stomach.
Im not sure why some people here have given The Divide one star. One person even called it torture porn (Im not sure how many movies this reviewer has seen but I reckon he certainly doesn't know what the torture porn genre looks like). I cant say it was an "art" movie either which has been indicated (by some) for some reason. The Divide is an apocalyptic tale based on the aftermath of the destruction of NYC by nuclear attack and how a few survivors, sheltering in a basement of a building, slowly fall apart as their grim situation becomes apparent. As already stated, the acting is quite good for the most part, and as the movie develops some scenes will be a little unsettling for some but its all in the vein of the story. I enjoyed it immensely, all the more so for not hearing of the movie anywhere in the media. At the beginning it seemed as if it would just be another load of emotional drama loosely attached to the apocalyptic situation above (something which plagues TV series like The Walking Dead (just not enough zombies for me, and far too much chitty chat) but it soon became apparent that this was not the case. The Divide descends into a dark hell of humanities worse attributes and two characters in particular cause the viewer to cringe as they play out their terrible roles. All in all, The Divide was excellent, and any mockers here really should stick to movies polished and shined by the big Hollywood multiplex puppetmasters. This ones recommended by me.
Well, yes. I'm another person who got suckered into watching this piece
of garbage. The most important thing you need to know about this movie
is that it's just not worth spending two hours of your life to watch
it. It's just bad.
You already know the plot, so there's no need to go over that. What you don't know is that, after quite an interesting start, things simply go to hell in every possible way - the plot is thrown out the window, the characters start behaving completely stupid 5 minutes into the movie, and the are really no explanations for anything that goes on from that point.
The acting is actually not bad - it's simply that the characters these actors put life into make no sense. Their decisions and actions that get them spiraling into gore and violence, simply don't add up at all. Here we have a group of random individuals that start arguing, fighting and provoking each other just moments after a nuke bomb has taken the city apart. And most of them act like total a**holes every single minute. When they find out crucially important information, they don't share it, but rather keep it to themselves. They don't stop for a second to think about rationing food and water. They don't care how long before the power runs out, or the toilet fills up, or air is spent, or... Well, they just don't care about anything that's really important. And it get's really frustrating to watch - REALLY fast.
I'm writing this as a person who has actually spent time in a similar situation - stuck in a basement with bunch of neighbors while the bombs hit the city above you for days, even weeks. And I can honestly say that, while this movie clearly wants us to believe we're all sick f*cks ready to snap and start beating, torturing, beating and raping each other, it's just not true. Also, speaking from my own experience, people want to survive and actually talk constructively and work together while utilizing common sense and common interest. Yes, there are conflicts, yes some people lose it, yes there is trauma, yes there are groups formed, but this... This is simply over the top.
This movie desperately tried to be the new Lord of the flies / The Road, but failed completely. Because it didn't make any sense. The violence and the perverted situations are obviously more of a director's reflection of his own mind, rather then a portrait of a realistic situation. Which would be fine, but the problem is the movie is constantly trying to come off as a real possible scenario. It's just not.
Worse of all, even if you go through this mess, you'll get no answers to anything and no hope at the end.
Oh, and btw, just to clarify - I'm a big movie buff, I devour serious cinema from all over the world and from all kinds of genres. I have no problem with gore, violence, exploring the dark side of human nature, sci-fi etc.
So, that's why I am going to recommend to skip this awful pretentious piece of trash and watch a much, much, MUCH better Spanish post apocalyptic movie, called The cold hour - a film that has all the same elements and then some, ends up just as bleak, but actually works!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
John Paul Sartre hadn't seen The Divide when he declared that 'Hell is
other people', but believe me, the film would do nothing to dispel his
belief. It begins predictably enough: as a nuclear explosion ravages
New York, the residents of an apartment block take refuge in the
bunker-like basement, which also happens to be the home of survivalist
janitor Mickey (Michael Biehn).
From the start, the combination of characters is not a happy one: quiet, determined Eva and her weak husband Sam (Lauren German and Iván González), shell-shocked mother Marilyn (Rosanna Arquette) and her young daughter Mary, short-tempered Delvin (Courtney B Vance), arrogant bully boys Bobby (Michael Eklund) and Josh (Milo Ventimiglia) and Josh's sensitive brother Adrien (Ashton Holmes).
Of course they immediately start bitching, bickering and ganging up on each other, but when armed, biohazard suited soldiers burst in to the bunker, snatch Wendy then, after a surreal, aborted sortie by Josh, weld the iron door shut, the trouble really starts. What follows is a powerful, disturbing, down right nasty depiction of the mental and physical deterioration of a band of desperate, disparate people suffering from cabin fever, radiation sickness and, eventually, full blown certifiable lunacy.
The performances in the film are of a calibre rarely seen in this kind of genre picture. In particular, Milo Ventimiglia (from Gilmore Girls!!) descent from regular guy to Lord of the Flies-style underground overlord is horrifically chilling, but even he is outshone by little known actor Michael Eklund's extraordinary turn as the psychotic, sexually depraved Bobby, whose sordid treatment of Marilyn is nasty in the extreme. (Poor Rosanna Arquette what did she do to deserve this?)
The Divide is seriously not for the faint-hearted with some scenes you'll really need your mental floss handy. But it's a stunning achievement for director Xavier Gens (whose last output was the creaky action flick Hit-man, which even Timothy Olyphant couldn't save) and a must for any self-respecting horror fan.
Just don't expect to come out of this bleak drama smiling: as the nuclear ash falls silently across a desolate New York City, we are left with the feeling that, to misquote Jeff Wayne's War of the Worlds, there is nothing worth fighting for in the spirit of man.
This rating required a lot of thought. In the first 20 minutes I would
have given it a 1/10. The characters are so cliché and the dialogue is
so poorly written that any self-respecting horror lover would quickly
roll their eyes.
So I stopped the movie. I could've sworn I'd seen very good reviews here on IMDb. I flipped open my laptop and re-read some of the reviews and sure enough, they were mostly positive.
Weird. Rarely a mention of the bad acting and awful script. At this point I just figured most of these reviews must be from 14 year olds or people who were invested in the film. I decided to watch on. I put on my headphones, cranked the volume and gave The Divide another go.
It got better. The acting remained appalling but there was a bit of a sci-fi element introduced which was kind of cool. The intensity ramped up and I became locked into the film. I didn't enjoy it, but I was in for the long haul. I watched it through to the end. All the way 'til the end of the credits.
And I was left with this very bad feeling. Very bad indeed. I don't really know how to describe this awful feeling. It reminded me of being a scared kid. I'm not talking about 'my brother freaked me out on Halloween' scared, I'm talking about 'I saw my neighbour drown a bunch of puppies in a barrel' scared.
Once, when I was 7 I snuck out of my room one night and from the top of the stairs I could see my dad watching TV. He was watching 'The Accused' with Jody Foster. I watched the last 45 minutes from my hiding place in shocked silence.
Remember when you were 7 years old? Did you ever see something you were much too young to see? Remember that feeling? Feeling scared and a bit ashamed? Seeing something you're just not emotionally mature enough to handle. Remember how your heart raced?
Did you ever want to 'un-see' something? I want to un-see The Divide.
When I was a kid I used to like to watch old episodes of the Twilight Zone and get freaked out. That's why I watch Horror and Sci-Fi now. I love that feeling. That feeling is what I'm after. 'The Descent' gave me that feeling. 'Session 9' gave me that feeling. '1408' even gave me that feeling. Obviously, 'The Exorcist' bloody gave me that feeling.
This does not give you that feeling. This feeling is different from that. It's not a feeling I want to feel anymore. This is a bad feeling.
What is good horror to you? One part of me wants to rate it a 0. But I'm a horror fan and it scared me, riveted me. How can I rate it less than a 6? I would prefer I never saw the movie. So perhaps that makes it 'good', I'm not sure. It depends. I mean horror is supposed to freak you out. And it really has some original story elements. I suppose I respect it. Bottom line it gave me nightmares.
How can give a horror film that gave me nightmares less than a 6?
Having said all that, every copy of this film should be incinerated and the ashes buried somewhere in the arctic tundra, away from people.
Or what the hell? Go ahead and watch it, if you've got the stones. Pour yourself a whiskey, take a massive bong hit. Turn the volume up nice and loud. Then just sit back my friend... some films require you to commit. Some demand a hefty price. This price must be paid in advance and there's no refunds.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
The movie starts off with a cliché twist, which all fans of
post-apocalyptic genre love: nukes fall, people take shelter in a
basement trying to survive. Classic "Schrodinger cat" dilemma whether
to stay locked inside or explore outside and risk possible radioactive
Right from the beginning viewers are struck with unrealistic stupidity of characters. Only Michael Biehn's "Mickey" demonstrates slight signs of common sense. The rest are idiotic beyond any imagination. The movie quickly becomes a "why don't you just" and "how is this possible" brain torture, which insults viewer's intelligence in the most rude way. But it is still interesting to some extent because there is something going on outside that locked door. At some point the plot gets twisted into a potentially Sci-Fi area. But then because of the sheer indescribable idiocy of the characters the plot suddenly ends (right about 40 minutes into the movie).
Viewer gets thrown back into the beginning of the movie to watch an hour and 20 minutes of poorly acted literally retarded characters doing stuff that majority of people would call sick. I forward jumped through that one hour and 20 minutes only stopping at BDSM sex scenes, which turned out to be not that great either.
The movie looks completely staged. Food and water drag out into infinity as days or possibly weeks pass by. Humans appear to survive without air ventilation in a sealed basement while working out, having sex and beating life out of each other.If I was to describe all of the directing blunders, I would need a dozen of pages.
Unless you are a huge fan of post-apocalyptic movies and MUST watch every single one, or if you cherish cheap BDSM, this one is not worth watching.
-- www.Ramascreen.com --
THE DIVIDE is dirty, disturbing, uncomfortable, and I like it! Post-apocalyptic thrillers are usually a messy business and that's what this Xavier Gens-directed film delivers. It's sheer madness, a terrifying look at society going down the drain and at humanity when it's lost its senses, of what could happen when the chips are down and fear takes over. THE DIVIDE is not for the faint of heart..
Turning a fallout shelter, a save haven and protection into a hellhole is the aim of this film. The tagline says it all, 'the lucky ones died in the blast' and so the remaining characters are not. I wasn't a fan of Gens' previous works, Hit-man was generally disappointing but that was to be expected of any video game-based movie, but THE DIVIDE goes to show that Gens may not be a lost cause after all when it comes to filmmaking. There have been movies in the past where they'd collect a number of people, lock them in one inescapable location long enough and you'd get to see who'd endure, who'd rebel, who'd break down, and who'd take charge. Give it enough time and they'll turn on each other and ask the question of 'who died and made you king?!', that's exactly THE DIVIDE's mission, when suspicions fester and morals go out the window.
Because the story is set in a basement room, the film dwells in the dark the entire time. And because of its R-rated horror approach, the characters find themselves eventually doing something that they themselves did not know they were capable of and we the audience have the options of either sticking around or looking away. Fantastic job by the cast ensemble, you've got Eva (Lauren German) who tries to remain sane and level-headed through the ordeal, and there's Marilyn (Rosanna Arquette) who suffers mental problem after the failure to protect her daughter, and then there's Delvin (Courtney B Vance) who at first may seem to be the reasonable one of the bunch, and you also have the cocky sh*theads Bobby and Josh, played by Michael Eklund and Milo Ventimiglia respectively, the shelter itself is owned by an ex-firefighter Mickey (Michael Biehn) who'd rather not share if he had the choice. The movie is a character study that's not too hard to crack but it's not an easy chew either. Right from the start of the beautifully done CG nuclear explosion, you know that it's not going to end well, because there is no way that these characters could stand each other, not with the limited resources they have and the frustration that comes from being self-imprisoned. And so the story shows how their interaction crumbles and insanity creeps in. THE DIVIDE is an excellent sci-fi horror that demands attention.
-- www.Ramascreen.com --
I attended the almost sold out screening of "The Divide" at Montreal
FantAsia Film Festival with special guest Xavier Gens (director),
Michael Biehn (actor) and Michael Eklund (actor).
The crowd, as always at FantAsia, was very engaged and energetic. However, as the horror story unfolded (not exactly horror genre film, save for a few scenes, but horrific in the psychological debacle of its characters), the crowd got quiet and silently absorbed the very well-crafted human drama. The performances felt real. The mood was perfectly dark and doomish. This post-apocalyptic take on humanity is not the most positive, but it is positively one of the best! The cinematography and few special effects are good, especially for the budget. We learned in the Q&A that the film was going to be canned, but that an intern in Winnipeg (Canada), said that his parents could finance the film and fork the few millions needed to finish the project. Great thing they did! This detachment from market-driving founding also allowed for greater artistic freedom and the three guests really explained how Xavier Gens challenged his actors (and some times cameramen) to improvise, be creative, immerse themselves in their characters, and serve the story and the film. The two Michaels were thrilled to worked this way and brought many contributions, while they also mentioned how Lauren German was a more by-the-book actress and they all had to event ploys to get her to be surprised and spontaneous. They all genuinely felt it was the best filmed to work on in their lives, although staying in character after shooting made for some tense sets and after-set (hotel) interactions. Gens choose to film the movie in chronological order, encouraged his actors to starve themselves (which Eklund did to the maximum) and let their mind go as the film reel rolled. Having written a novel in chronological order, I understand exactly what latitude that gives in character development. The story takes unexpected turns, but feels right, cognitive and consistent.
The story with its sci-fi elements briefly introduces a world of wonder, before shutting the door closed on hope and humanity. It is saved by sparkles of effective comedy, but transgresses into a struggle to survive at any price. What is there left? Humanity? Dignity? Love? Compassion? Not really.
As dark is it it, this vision hopefully encourages us to do better in our own lives. No need to wait for a nuclear explosion to figure out what is our desired behaviour for betterment.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
This movie felt like it was rushing although it was a long, drawn out
Now, I've read enough novels and seen enough movies to understand the premise that when society breaks down so go all the checks and balances that keep us from picking up a stick and smacking someone over the head with it because we don't like his eye colour BUT...I would like to believe that it would take longer than 5 seconds BEFORE we get to that point.
********Here there be Spoilers********* The ONLY actor that seemed to possess a modicum of sense was Michael Biehn and I'm not sure if he adjusted the script as they shot it or the writer and director had a long series of meetings to work on his part.
But even there, there were plot holes.
1. We have people WATCHING nuclear blasts without eye protection and not suffering any ill effects (even TEMPORARY blindness) before running down a bunch of stairs in an effort to try and get to safety.
2. You have a guy who has obviously spent years and tons of money on preparing a shelter in case of some catastrophe BUT he never bothered to develop a plan about what to do in case...a bunch of people show up and he is going to take them in?
3. The people get into this shelter and IMMEDIATELY begin doing some incredibly stupid things. Perhaps it would have made more sense to try and figure out what they just witnessed or even feel a sense of loss or destruction instead of trying to pick fights with the guy who let them IN?
4. This plot hole truly baffles me. Supposedly one of the people inside the shelter has the capability to transmit their location with a walkie-talkie to the outside world. Err...excuse me, but ever hear of a thing called EMP? It wipes out all electronics so, even if that short-range radio suddenly developed long-range capability, it would be fried.
5. Then for no particular reason we throw in some government or military types that are not coming in to save them but are there to steal their children? WHAT? REALLY? Oh, and as a small addendum, the main guy who owns the shelter has no weapons with which to protect himself and the others...well, that's not quite true, he does have a gun which he conveniently remembers that he has AFTER he loses a finger and that gun becomes a CONVENIENT device for the movie to progress.
This particular movie resembles an acting class doing an IMPROV scene of exactly this type of scenario. Everybody is trying to show their best WILD and CRAZY characters to try and impress the teacher but they don't blend anything together to make a coherent story.
I watched the whole thing hoping it would get better and even at the very end I half-expected to see something that might make it all GEL together but even there, it just LOST it and left me saying....WHY did I waste my time watching this?
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I have never posted a review on IMDb, purely because I find that some
reviewers apparently enjoy trashing a film, while completely missing
the point. Some of the reviews here had me shaking my head in
wonderment. Calling it trash? It is labeled as Science Fiction/Horror,
although I personally think that it is more a character study in human
behavior. The following can be regarded as spoilers: A nuclear missile
hits New York, we don't know why. People rushing to survive whilst
pushing away other people (they are not so innocent to begin with),
gets trapped in a bunker. There are some tantalizing glimpses of what
is going on outside, but that is not what drives the film. What drives
this film is the interaction between good and bad. For the reviewers
that saw this movie as people descending into violent behavior, they
apparently did not notice this interaction. I would therefore like to
break this up into the following and maybe answer some stupid questions
that were raised. These people are trapped, they have nowhere to go,
and they are slowly being poisoned by radiation seeping in through the
sewers. (And yes, reviewer that asked where the air came from? It was
explained in the first five minutes of the film.) So the film asks of
us, what would you do to survive? Will you give yourself up to
degradation and humiliation to get food and water? Will you be strong
enough to stand up and defend people, even the ones hurting others? Or
will you go insane when you lose someone you love and just give in,
because you know there is no escaping, and death is more preferable.
How strong is the survival instinct, and how far would you go. Some
reviewers thought this was supposed to be an art film. No it is not.
Not in the least bit. It was not sold as such. It is also not supposed
to be enjoyable. (How is a post-apocalyptic film supposed to be
enjoyable anyway?). It is not a 'Hollywood' movie, but an independent
production. It is a bleak movie. And yes, not for the faint of heart.
But it is the kind of film that explores its premise, and delivers in
spades. Some of the reviewers apparently expected a 'Saw' type movie,
and was so bereft; they just went ahead and blasted away at it. It is
not torture porn. It is not supposed to make you feel all warm and
tingly inside. It is supposed to make you think. It is a shame that
this get overlooked. In the end, it has nothing to do with the 'Nuclear
Missile' and subsequent aftermath, which was just to set the stage.
And for the reviewer that posted that 'Saw' is a excellent movie? I personally think that 'Saw' is the American Idol of film making. It degraded it, trashed it, and got rewarded for it. I realize that this is a long review, but I am sick and tired of armchair reviewers getting their kicks out of trashing extremely well done films.
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