“4:44 Last Day On Earth” – if it were only true [MOVIE REVIEW]

willem dafoe
Wilem Dafoe and Shanyn Leigh star (sort of) in 4:44 Last Day On Earth
willem dafoe

Wilem Dafoe and Shanyn Leigh star (sort of) in 4:44 Last Day On Earth

Abel Ferrara, a cult filmmaker who may be in danger of losing his following with this film, has improvised – and I say this in the most generous possible way because nothing contained within this woe begotten project could possibly have been scripted – what one couple goes through for a couple of hours before the world ends due to our environmental negligence. Yes, folks, in the imaginary world of Abel Ferrara, even Al Gore didn’t know how right he was.

Watching this film makes you beg for either it or the world to end. In Ferrara’s interpretation of the apocalypse we will die of boredom – something that happens well before the end of the 85 very long minutes. His world ends with a whimper not a shout.

The less said about his two leads, Wilem Dafoe and newcomer (if this film doesn’t kill her career) Shanyn Leigh, the better. They may have been delighted to be allowed to improvise all their dialogue and actions, but when lines like “Al Gore was right.” “It’s going to be okay.” “How are you doing? and “We’re all going to die.” are the highlights, you are not in for a treat. Believe me, when a film has no script it’s not a good thing. And this film is lacking in the big three – no script, no direction and no interest.

Always known for self-indulgence, Ferrara has outdone himself here. That this will get a theatrical release is mind boggling – or, to be more precise, mind-numbing.

Go at your own risk but be forewarned. This is 85 minutes you’ll never get back.

Opening Friday March 23 at the Laemmle Monica 4-Plex

Neely also writes a blog about writers in television and film at http://www.nomeanerplace.com


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