6.5/10
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12 user 2 critic

The Apocalypse (2000)

San Giovanni - L'apocalisse (original title)
| Drama | TV Movie 2000
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It is 90 A.D., and the Roman Empire is being run by the Emperor Domitian, who has declared himself to be God, and ruler over heaven and Earth. The Christians, who do not recognize his ... See full summary »

Director:

Raffaele Mertes

Writers:

Francesco Contaldo (screenplay), Raffaele Mertes | 1 more credit »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Richard Harris ... John
Vittoria Belvedere ... Irene
Benjamin Sadler ... Valerius
Christian Kohlund ... Quintus Maximus
Erol Sander ... Ionicus
Ian Duncan ... Demetrius
Bruce Payne ... Domitian
Alessandro Bertolucci Alessandro Bertolucci ... Marcello
Walter Nudo ... Hermes
Constantine Gregory ... Corvus
Luca Ward Luca Ward ... Eracle
Matt Patresi ... Titone
Loris Loddi ... Watchman
Massimiliano Pazzaglia Massimiliano Pazzaglia ... Silvano
Aaron Taylor-Johnson ... Johanan (as Aaron Johnson)
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Storyline

It is 90 A.D., and the Roman Empire is being run by the Emperor Domitian, who has declared himself to be God, and ruler over heaven and Earth. The Christians, who do not recognize his divinity, are a thorn in his side, and he is having them cruelly persecuted. The small village in Asia Minor, to which the aged apostle John has withdrawn, is also attacked by Roman soldiers. As if by a miracle, John is the only person to escape the slaughter, and he receives divine orders to write down the visions he will have, and communicate them to the Christian communities in the Roman provinces of Asia. The voice tells him that they should discover what is and what will happen thereafter. Among the Christians of Asia Minor, who believe that John is dead, everyone is deeply worried about being persecuted. Gaius, the community elder in Smyrna, is concerned that only a few believers still dare come to the ritual supper. Under these circumstances, Christianity can no longer exist. But at this point, ...

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

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Details

Country:

Italy | France | Germany | UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

2000 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Apocalypse See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

KirchMedia, Lube, Lux Vide See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Stereo

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Quotes

John: God will always win, friends. His victory over evil is the root of our faith.
See more »

Connections

Follows Joseph (1995) See more »

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User Reviews

 
Preaching to the Quire …
27 March 2012 | by t_atzmuellerSee all my reviews

"Holy s**t", was my first impression when watching "The Apocalypse".

There are two types of films when it comes to historic-religious movies: there are such epics as "Ben Hur" or "Quo Vadis", which have religious undertones, yet are fun and accessible to those who don't particularly care for religion. And then there is a legion (pardon the pun) of pesky little bible films, that makes you feel like you've invited Jehovah's Witnesses into your DVD player. "The Apocalypse" belongs to the second category.

Two reasons prompted me to watch this film: for one, this was to be one of the final performances of Richard Harris. Secondly, since "Passenger 57", I've always rooted for Bruce Payne playing a villain, but in the end, I wished that I hadn't squandered two hours of my precious time.

Harris looks like what he is: a frail, dying old man. Payne as the megalomaniac Emperor Domitian is hamming it up for all it's worth, grimacing and glaring, never tired to remind the audience that he's "Domitian the God" (fortunately Payne's role is rather small, probably filmed in a single afternoon). The rest of the cast are extras and two-bit actors, assembled from European TV-shows and series. None of them practice what in the classic sense you would call 'acting', but who are we to deny them a handful of dollars and warm meals from the caterers.

So, what speaks for the film? Preciously little. The overall tone is so preachy, the viewers come to believe that this was actually directed by Ned Flanders of "The Simpsons". The special effects (remember: this is a film about the apocalypse, the end of mankind) are laughable, either culled from documentaries (exploding volcanoes, bad weather at sea, etc) or animated on some cheap computer. Watch out for the scene of the angels appearing with their trumpets and tell me that you didn't expect Eric Idle to appear, blowing a bullhorn. Let's not forget the music: since this is a bible film, there is a strong need for incessant, ever unnerving choruses and quire music, that will make you wonder, whether you want to listen to this for all eternity or rather join the opposition, where at least they play catchy Rock n' Roll.

And watch out for that talking sheep that randomly appears during scenes, preaching and sermonizing about some things or the other.

You may have seen the film and wonder where all those glowing reviews and the high ratings came from. You may also have noticed that virtually every movie of the same ilk has similar positive comments and ratings. Yes, sometimes the wish is the father of thought … but mostly it all just remains wishful thinking.

If you're into Roman films, why not go for the TV-show "Rome" or re-watch "Gladiator"? If fantasy films are your thing, "The Hobbit" is only a few month away. If the Apocalypse interests you, Roland Emmerich has made quiet a few films about that but as far as religious films, none was able to live up to the standards of "Life of Brian" yet.

I give it two points out of ten: one for the memory of Richard Harris, and one for the preaching sheep. Amen!


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