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306 out of 513 people found the following review useful:

Lord of the ... stupid

Author: inspektorr from Croatia
29 March 2012

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!

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132 out of 200 people found the following review useful:

Very difficult to review.

Author: moonbeaver from Canada
1 April 2012

This rating required a lot of thought. In the first 20 minutes I would have given it a 1/10. The characters are cliché and the dialogue is so cring-worthy 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 they introduced a bit of a sci-fi element that was kind of cool. The intensity ramped up and I became locked into the film. 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. I guess 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 catatonic silence.

Remember when you were 7 years old? Did you ever see something you were much too young to see? Remember that 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.

This film 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 and sit back. Some films require you to commit. Some demand a hefty price. For The Divide, it's a price that must be paid in advance and there are no refunds.

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116 out of 179 people found the following review useful:

Hell is other people...

Author: elaine-105 from United Kingdom
23 June 2011

*** 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.

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93 out of 148 people found the following review useful:

Great idea, but it ended 40 minutes into the movie

Author: reazonable from Ukraine
28 March 2012

*** 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 contamination unfolds.

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.

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136 out of 236 people found the following review useful:

FantAsia Pleaser that Leaves Little Hope for Humanity

Author: Christian from Canada
23 July 2011

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.

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113 out of 193 people found the following review useful:

Sheer madness

Author: from United States
14 January 2012

-- --

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.

-- --

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81 out of 131 people found the following review useful:

Humans are basically violent by nature...BUT

Author: davidfurlotte from Canada
31 March 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This movie felt like it was rushing although it was a long, drawn out affair.

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?

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70 out of 110 people found the following review useful:

Extremely bleak, but also very well done.

Author: j-cronje from South Africa
29 March 2012

*** 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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64 out of 102 people found the following review useful:

Solid Flick - Why the haters are wrong:

Author: cope650 from California
29 March 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I created this IMDb account solely due to some of the ridiculous hate and remarks about this movie on existing reviews.

I felt a recurring complaint was that the characters actions were 'unrealistic' and the characters were so 'stupid' etc. To address both, take the simple scenario they open the movie with. A bunch of seemingly random 'groups' of people barreling down the stairs in a desperate and manic state trying to survive. In New York City. A select group ends up making it into this 'bunker'. Now, I surround myself with generally intellectual people, but if you think that taking a sample of 8 strangers from a random NYC building is going to yield a predominant output of good-hearted, intelligent people - then you're living in a damn bubble. News flash, there are impulsive sick f's everywhere you look, and equally important - sub ~90 IQ seems to be average these days.

Anyway, my point being, complaints about the unrealistic characters are completely unwarranted. If anything, the movie was probably a realistic depiction of ~8 random people in this situation. However, another group of 8 could yield an entirely different result. I think that's part of what the movie is trying to convey -- that getting stuck in a bunker during a post-apocalyptic scenario can potentially cause a Divide-esque situation. One person even mentioned that there weren't any 'enlightening' remarks or memorable quotes from the characters. No sh*t! This isn't Casablanca buddy, this is ~8 random people in a claustrophobic room dying of acute radiation poisoning and losing their minds while they're at it!

Now look, there were a few issues with the movie. I will admit there were a few scenes where the acting was lackluster and the situation was predictable. You may even roll your eyes once or twice. I was definitely disappointed with the fact that the movie didn't dive into more of the 'What's going on outside' story, but that's how the damn game goes! This movie wasn't about that subject, and as disappointing as it was, at least they gave us something! I mean seriously, most Sci-Fi or Post-apocalyptic movies these days are complete crap*, and most would've cut to black after she exited the sewer (*pun intended). It was a nice addition to have the guys drop on in with the HAZMAT suits and swoop the girl up. But that wasn't what the movie was about. The Lord of the Flies style deterioration (or decay - hah) of their bunker society was the focus, and I thought they did a damn good job of portraying an (again, potential) situation of this nature. My jaw dropped a few times and I was pleasantly surprised at how bold the writers/director was with some of the 'sick-f***' actions of Bobby and Josh. Props to Biehn, Ventimiglia, Arquette and Eklund for some generally awesome acting performances. The rest were solid too, and Lauren German.. Beautiful.

Most importantly: How many time's did you think about what you would do in this exact scenario? How you would break down, mentally and physically? Once your hair started falling out? ACCEPTING YOUR IMMANENT DEATH? Once the doors were welded shut and once the fire started? I'll just leave it at that.

I am a huge fan of post-apocalyptic scenarios, so maybe I'm biased, but I liked this movie more than numerous other "highly rated" flicks I've seen in the past year or two. Take Hunger Games for example, raving reviews from the critics... I enjoyed The Divide more. And speaking of unrealistic, the Hunger Games epitomizes unrealistic. But I'm not even going to go there. If you're some avid Christian or bible thumping religious buffoon and can't handle some brutal potentially real life scenarios, then stay away! This movie is not for you. If you love happy-go-lucky teenage girl stories like Hunger Games or Twilight, please, stay away. (I'm not saying Hunger Games was horrible by any means, it was entertaining enough. I am only commenting on the massive influx of rave reviews for Hunger Games - whereas The Divide achieves an undeserving 5.8?!)

Although the scenario isn't exactly something new (people stuck in a room, losing their minds), it was a fresh take on it, and 10-fold more enjoyable than the 'competition'. The post-apocalyptic back story is a great back-bone to this scenario, and although I wish we found out more - like 90%+ of related movies these days - we are left in some uncomfortable ambiguity. But in the end, that doesn't take away from this movie.

Solid Flick, 8/10. 7/10 if Post-Apocalyptic scenarios aren't your thing at all.

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43 out of 71 people found the following review useful:

Terrible movie

Author: compmend from United States
28 March 2012

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This movie seems to advertise itself as being a groundbreaking character study into the post apocalyptic interactions between a group of survivors.

First of all, the nuclear apocalypse is shown in only a couple of scenes throughout the movie. An explanation for the attack is never revealed and there are scattered glimpses of faint possibilities haphazardly revealed throughout the movie, but, the viewer is left to fill in this large gaping plot hole for themselves.

Secondly the entire dialog seems to have been written by a socially inept adolescent, with no "ground breaking" insight or thought provoking lines in the whole movie. The characters where all unlikable, unrealistic, and unbelievable in the delivery of the dialog.

The movie is one big wimp fest with tantrums galore, nonsensical and whimsical deviance, and absolutely no plot. The characters where all immature, behaving like children from the onset and continuing through till the end of the movie.

I sat through this torturous piece of garbage hoping for some piece of redemption. It never came and I have not felt so robbed by a movie, as I did after watching this one. I want my money back.

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