The Day the World Ended (2001)
Film: The Day the World Ended
Director: Terence Gross
Writer: Max Enscoe and Annie DeYoung
Starring: Natassja Kinski, Bobby Edner and Randy Quaid
This film begins with a woman driving in the middle of nowhere; she is played by Natassja Kinski. She talks over the phone to a friend from New York, where is originally from. We learn that she has taken the job as a school therapist for a small school. She finally finds the town and everyone seems to be staring at her. She has to slam on her breaks to stop at a crosswalk. A boy stares at her; he is played by Bobby Edner. Her radio goes to loud static.
She then meets the sheriff, played by Harry Groener. He tells her to move along and then he pulls her over. She tells him who she is and why she is there. He is not very open to her being there.
She then goes to the school and meets with the principal, he is played by Stephen Tobolowsky. He fills her in on the job and the school. He then takes her to where her office will be.
Edner gets into a fight. He is getting punched in the face and with a look he makes the other kid’s nose bloody. The nurse breaks up the fight and blames Edner for it; the nurse is played by Debra Christofferson. She is yelling at him when she enters her office, which is now being shared with Kinski. Kinski scolds her for treating him that way.
Kinski talks to Edner and his dad shows up, played by Randy Quaid. He doesn’t like the idea of her talking to him and he lets her know. We learn that Edner is a quiet boy and loves aliens. His mother has died and it is just him and Quaid.
Kinski then goes to the local diner where we meet the cook, played by Lee de Broux. His waitress is played by Kate Fuglei. There is also the former judge of the area who comes to the diner every day, played by Neil Vipond. They do not take kindly to Kinski here, except for Vipond. They make her a burger and send her on her way.
We end up learning that Edner has been adopted by Quaid. His mother was not popular in the town and no one knew who his father was. Most of the town doesn’t like Edner because of this. They all treat him poorly except for Groener, Tobolowsky and Quaid. Quaid allows him to watch and read about aliens, knowing that is what he is into.
Kinski doesn’t respect Quaid’s wishes and continues trying to speak with Edner. She knows there is something he is hiding. Edner doesn’t talk about his mother and he doesn’t seem to remember. Quaid is adamant about not bringing her up either.
During a storm, Quaid has to leave to help someone as he is the town doctor. Edner is watching the original ‘Day the World Ended’. He hears something outside and he sees a lightning bolt strike. There is a ball that comes down with it. He tries to tell Quaid about it, but he doesn’t listen.
At the school, Tobolowsky meets with Christofferson to have an affair. As they are leaving, Christofferson is attacked by something. It also looks at Tobolowsky and cuts to black.
Edner believes that this alien is his father. He claims that his mother told him this and that is all he remembers. He tries to communicate with the alien. School is closed due to the death of Christofferson. Quaid takes Edner to wait at the diner, but the alien attacks there. Kinski showed up to speak with Edner and helps him escape. Vipond gets out, but the rest are not so lucky.
Quaid knows that that Edner saw whatever is doing this and tries to get more out of him. Edner tries to remember what happened the day his mother died. Kinski is out to help him to find out what secret this town is keeping. Will she find out? Will Edner remember what happened? Is this alien his father? Who else will become its victim?
I have to say that this film is pretty good. The film unfolds nicely. I think it is well paced and for a made for television film, it is not bad. I think the acting is okay. Kinski is good as well as Quaid and Edner. The rest of the cast is decent, but they don’t give much. I think the alien is actually really good, except for at the end when you see its face. That was the only time it ruined it for me. I think the death scenes with it are great because most of the violence is shown off camera and leaves things up to the imagination. This is much better for me than CGI and making it look fake. I did also like the reveal at the end as it is an interesting concept.
I have touched on already that the alien’s face did hurt this film for me. I also thought that the supporting cast in this film was not that great. They don’t ruin it, but they don’t add a lot. Being made for television, that hinders the film in what they could do, but I will commend them that they did good for what they could.
With that said, I would recommend this film if you like to see a homage to 50s alien films. This one isn’t great, but it is not bad. The acting from the stars is okay, but the rest of the cast is decent. It has a good concept and the story does unfold nicely. The alien looks good except for its face and the death scenes are not bad. This is a remake, but I do not remember much from the original. There is a pretty good reveal at the end of the film which I liked. If this sounds good, give it a chance. Do not expect to be blown away, but it is enjoyable.
My Rating: 5 out of 10