At First Glance: “Left Behind (2014)”

*Heavy sigh.* Sometimes I wonder why I even bother. Here is yet another depressing remake. Or, more like, another remake that will no doubt actually leave you feeling like there’s no hope.

I’m not speaking about the premise of the upcoming Stoney Lake Entertainment film “Left Behind”, but the general knowledge that it’s another remake. To make matters worse, it’s a remake from the early 2000s. Seriously, did we run out of ’80s films or older and must dig our way through the 2000s? Did we skip the ’90s on purpose?

This apocalyptic thriller stars Nicholas Cage (“Rage”, “Joe”), Chad Michael Murray (“Chosen”, Tyler Perry’s A Madea Christmas”), Cassi Thomson (“1000 to 1: The Cory Weissman Story”, “Switched at Birth”), Jordin Sparks (“Dear Secret Santa”, “The Inevitable Defeat of Mister & Pete”), and Lea Thompson (“Switched at Birth”, “Call Me Crazy: A Five Film”).

The film is directed by Vic Armstrong (“The Adventures of Young Indiana Jones: Adventures in the Secret Service”, “Army of One”) and written by Paul Lalonde (“Left Behind” Trilogy, “Deceived”) and John Patus (“Saul: The Journey to Damascus”, “The Mark: Redemption”). The film is based on the book of the same name by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins.

The only upside that I see to this second trailer is that it’s better than the first. Looks less fake. However, it still looks ridiculous. The timing sucks as “The Leftovers” is airing on HBO currently, and even if it’s not about The Rapture directly, it’s still going to garner enough comparisons with this film.

The next area where this film will suffer, has nothing to do with it being a remake. I know, surprising. It’s that it’s, yet again, another end of the world film. As far as I can tell, in the last decade, there’s been one successful end of the world film, and just barely. The prospects for this film don’t look well already.

This film just looks so stupid. It doesn’t even come close to interesting. The films lead doesn’t convince me of anything but that.

Cage, for some reason, hasn’t managed to put out anything remotely successful since at least 2006. Yes, some have been indies, but that’s not really up to him. Every other major film has either bombed, been hated by critics, or both. Why anyone thought he was a good choice is beyond me? The studio, for reason’s passing understanding, had the stupid thought of including the fact that Cage was an Academy Award winner. They forgot, however, to include the fact that that was a for a film released almost 20 years ago. Normally that’s not a point to go on about, but when this isn’t a film that will be recognized for, pretty much anything, and he hasn’t done anything particularly good in a long time, it must be beaten with a stick. It only makes this trailer all the more strange.

While I hate, in general, that this is a remake, seriously, I should make a section for these, it’s still the idea that this film came from a decade that’s barely past. Nothing’s safe!

I learned, when writing this, and I’m puzzled that both Lalonde and Putus, had a hand in the original films. Why would they want to rewrite and remake something they had helped create originally. The original films, from what I’ve heard, are pretty much your average B-movie, but the fans love them! Why help ruin the films legacy? Could the studio not find anyone to butcher this remake, like so many previous writers of remakes have.

Some people enjoy silly apocalypse films, which constantly pop up each year, but I’m not one of them. Then, as of this year, there’s a religious themed film out every few months. They’ve done pretty well, even if critics weren’t completely on board, but that relationship with moviegoers, may end with this film.


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