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|Index||213 reviews in total|
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Xavier Gens' "The Divide" opens with a series of explosions ravaging
New York City. Fleeing the flames, several men and women barricade
themselves in the basemen of an apartment building. In this basement, a
"Lord of the Flies" situation develops, Gens' survivors forming gangs,
squabbling over leadership, food, status, and eventually committing
Whilst "The Divide's" descent into savagery is rushed and unconvincing, the film's moments of gore, nihilism and hate nevertheless offer glimpses of truth. Elsewhere Gens' attempts at being "political" are jaw-droppingly bizarre. He has, for example, bigoted survivalists "proven right" in their fears of bisexual men, whilst French cowards are revealed to be inept even in their sole moments of bravery. Throw in allusions to the September 11th terrorist attacks, and you have a rather odd film.
"The Divide" stars cult-favourite Michael Biehn, the fearless Rosanna Arquette, and ends with a powerful scene, young Eva (Lauren German) flushing herself down a toilet in an attempt to escape a humanity which has revealed itself to be but slime and filth. The film contains some cleverly designed low-budget Hazmat suits.
6/10 Worth one viewing.
People trapped after a disaster/war (yawn), they turn on each other
(yawn), there are few survivors (yawn).
For the most part, this movie was predictable to the point of tedious. People do dumb, predictable things that you see coming a mile away. The characters that aren't fatally averse to acting in a way that a banana slug would recognize as best for their near-term survival either fade into the background or become antagonists so over the top they'd make John Voight blush. As if this complete lack of nuance wasn't enough, the boneheaded moves are then used to shoehorn the movie into its next telegraphed stupidity. The only exception to this were the two final sequences, which I'd describe, but I wouldn't want to spoil the only good part of the movie.
I knew nothing of this movies before I came across it and to be honest
after the first 10 minutes I really thought it was going to be a
typically low budget, badly acted scfi/horror movie. However, after the
hope of rescue fades and the full horror of their predicament hits home
the characters each embark on a downward spiral which makes for
The plot can be divided into 3 portions or acts, each act punctuated by an event which ends the proceeding act and starts the next. The first event is the destruction of NYC by a nuclear war which opens the film and initiates the first act, where a bunch of virtual strangers find themselves entombed in the basement of their destroyed apartment building presided over by their erstwhile care taker, Mickey. Now Mickey, played not entirely convincingly by Michael Biehn, attempts to exert an iron control over the others, he controls the food supply, he calls the shots. However, after the second major event occurs the groups' dynamic starts to change, Mickeys' authority becomes challenged and individual members of the group embark upon a journey into hell. This is particularly true of Marilyn, an excellent and brave performance by Rosanna Arquette. A third event occurs and things really start to slide....
Bad points: This is a character led movie rather than a plot led one and maybe that is why certain reviewers have judged it so harshly. The little plot there is isn't really developed and big questions remain which could have been explored, even if only in discussion between the characters. Some of the characters are a little bit weak and don't really contribute much, I'm thinking of Sam and Adrien in particular but also Eva who is a little 2 dimensional.
But all in all its a solid 7, not to everyone's tastes and certainly an adult only film but definitely worth a watch.
Well personally I go for the bad news first so I can finish off with
the good so I'm left with that positive aftertaste.
Bad: The storyline. I mean, don't get me wrong I love PA movies and will suck up movies like this all day but what got my goad in this flick was the overly bleak, unnecessarily bleak overtones in the movie. I don't know, and hope I never find out, how I'd respond in a similar sitch but I don't think it would be anywhere near the depravity shown here. So the storyline isn't for me. One other thing without giving anything away near the beginning something happens that never gets explained. It seems like a cool path that the movie could have taken had they expounded on said happening instead it happens then is never brought back up. Maybe the director wanted to add it but it was already about 20 minutes too long so it had to get cut. I dunno, those sorts of things kinda big me when the movie is over those are the things, unanswered questions, that I think about as I walk out of the theater or as I exit out of netflix or, uh hmmm, solarmovie. Anyway, unanswered questions come in two categories and both make me bummed out. First we have the noir film director who wants to make a "piece of art" and paints a broad, ambiguous picture and then criticizes people for not being cool if they confess that they don't get it. I say, f you to those punks. Not everyone has the kind of mind that allows for them to accept ambiguous themes as something ahead of its time and artsy. The second is when the film just didn't come together right for whatever reason and there are unanswered questions. Like I said both bug me.
Ooonnnnnn to the good.
The good: The acting, the set design, the fx, and at the risk of contradicting my previous statement I actually can understand and appreciate the introspection of morality and personalities as they are pushed to their limits.
That's my take. If you like PA films see it unless of course you get queasy at the sight of someone smashing a someone else's head in to the ground and pushing their thumbs into their eye sockets and this was all preceded by him forcing himself on to a woman and in the same room there is a dead woman who is tied up and bloody on a bed. So if you don't like that kinda thing then steer clear.
We see a nuclear bomb go off in New York and the survivors hold up in
the basement. That's the premise to The Divide and, although not that
original, could just work. And it does... sort of.
Whether you'll enjoy The Divide or not will depend on where you expect the film to go from there. I suppose I better put in 'SPOILERS' here, just in case you really don't want to know. Basically, the rest of the film is the characters decent into the fatalistic realisation that their world is gone and how they deal with that.
If you like the sound of that, give it a go.
I could leave it there, but, unfortunately, there was a semi-flaw that bugged me - there are certain scenes in the film that don't fit with that neat little premise and will leave you wondering what is actually going on. Well... those scenes did that with me. I then waited through the whole film for them to be explained. They weren't. I was annoyed.
Despite feeling that a few scenes shouldn't have been in there because they radically change the whole story, the overall film was actually okay - Michael Biehn (remember him? Terminator, Aliens and the Abyss) does well as the slightly psychotic lead and the others serve their purposes well.
Bottom line: if you like a bleak tale - this is for you. But if loose ends grind your gears, be prepared to be frustrated by the time the credits roll.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
A disparate group of souls invite themselves into someone's bomb
shelter to avoid a nuclear explosion. It would be fair to say that they
do not get on.
This film has a good cast who all deliver excellent passionate performances in this claustrophobic variation on a Lord Of The Flies-type survival of the fittest story.
Unfortunately, everyone behaves abominably or worse (or, to be more precise, civilised restraint breaks down)(fairly quickly), and what follows is depressing, dispiriting, and without any sense of spiritual uplift when it gets to the ending. Don't expect to come to the end of this film thinking "Wow! I really feel good about life now!" And you won't feel like that during the film either.
(39%) A big slab of nasty exploitation drivel with a small hint of what maybe could have been a better movie if handled by more skillful team. To its credit this has a decent first half with an engrossing build-up involving Asian men in space suits complete with machine guns and kidnapped children inside metal pods, but the plot soon dissolves into typical fight for survival horror as certain character's morals slide of a cliff and they begin to turn into violent monsters. The themes and messages of which are a subtle as the nuclear bomb right at the beginning. There's an annoying plot-hole towards the end involving one of bad guys oddly allowing someone get away during a coming together for no clear reason why beyond of course it needed to happen for the sake of the plot, giving me the impression that the makers either aren't trying hard enough, or they simply just don't care. The quite aggressive desire to shock feels overly forced and crass; while the sheer grimness of it all isn't balanced out by the workman-like script and average direction. Overall, maybe worth a look for those that like somewhat harder edged movies that don't go beyond an R rating. But this isn't worth paying any money to see.
I am not sure what I was expecting but I don't think I was expecting such a no hoper of a movie. All that really happens is the characters who managed to protect themselves from nuclear bombs falling all around them in a sturdy apartment building basement end up seemingly all getting radiation poisoning. I wouldn't call that much of a plot. It is like 'Lord of the Flies' with all adults descending into the psychological muck as their dignity is stripped from them by the dwindling prospects of surviving the unsurvivable. Its not exactly the kind of scenario you can do a whole lot with plot wise. I found it intense and dismal all at the same time. Not once did the characters affected by radiation poisoning say that they were affected by radiation poisoning. Its not the kind of thing you don't notice happening. I really wouldn't recommend this film to anyone. End of comment.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I cannot understand why there are any negative reviews of this movie at
all. It really does show our "Real Animalistic Human Behavior". The
only things I wish they would have done was elaborate more on who the
"Scientists" in White were and what were they doing with all those
kids. Also, how much time had actually passed by before these
characters started to crack. Where did the cigarettes keep coming from?
Besides these few points of the movie, every other aspect is 100%
believable. I am sure that if this was real, there would have been
hundreds of tenants in that one apartment building and a lot of
visitors to these tenants, and all of them would have different
personalities. So, if a group of these tenants and visitors made it to
safety, most of them would have an immediate response to the stress of
what just happened and the bickering would start almost at once! As
time would pass, the stress would be outright unbearable and their
minds would simply crack under all that stress. The writing and acting
were superb! Each Actor/es played their role very well and made this
movie more real, and with that being said I am not going to be able to
get this movie out of my head for a very long time.
I would agree that this movie is not meant for children because of the nudity, sexual content and language but also because of the content. I feel that this movie truly shows what Humans are capable of in extreme situations.
I watched this movie a week ago, and since then I have been thinking
about it, and wondering why it did not get a better score on IMDb.
Which is an achievement in itself; how often do you see a movie that
keeps you thinking about it?
Reading the description, one might think The Divide is a science fiction movie. Or perhaps a horror movie. Or that it should at least contain some action. Or should pick up on some of the story lines. Like explaining who the men in white suits are. Explaining what has actually happened. Why there was an attack. Why the white tunnels. And why take the young girl and leave the rest.
But the movie doesn't explain much. And it's not very scary so I wouldn't call it a horror movie. Perhaps it's science fiction, but don't let the men in white suits with tubes fool you; they don't play a major role. The Divide is mainly about a bunch of strangers being stuck in a basement together, while there's no getting out.
So then perhaps it gets kind of horrory, or at least a little gross. Although it was still watchable for me, and I started watching this movie because I was wondering what Milo Ventimiglia - who I remember from Gilmore Girls, my favourite show a few years ago - is up to these days...
To me it seems like the nuclear attack on New York, the men in white suits and what happens to Wendy are just (very interesting!) background circumstances to the real story: some strangers together in a claustrophobic basement, fighting for their basic needs and slowly falling back into some animalistic state. Hero-gone-bad Josh summarizes the movie pretty accurately at some point when he says ''groups break down into self interest in times of scarcity'' and oh yes they do!
Seeing The Divide as a kind of social experiment-movie, I think it's pretty successful. The atmosphere is truly claustrophobic and the acting is surprisingly good. Yes, there are some plot holes and irregularities, like the main characters being too fit and too unfriendly to be representative of the average American, their lack of interest of what happened to their friends and family etc. So The Divide is not quite Gilmore Girls, but still pretty entertaining. And slightly worrying and unsettling too, of course.
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