Film Review: This Is The End

Eventually Seth Rogen and his buddies were bound to get tired of the goofy stoner comedies. They’re all the same after all, aren’t they? Instead they turned to making a documentary on a group of friends and their experiences during the apocalypse. Of course, This Is The End isn’t a documentary and it isn’t filmed as one but the actors all portray themselves. They portray themselves in name, at least. James Franco is a rich, arrogant artist while Jonah Hill is the humble, sensitive, nice-to-a-fault guy. Seth Rogen is, well, pretty much the same lovable stoner goofball he portrays in every film. Life imitating art, perhaps?

In This Is The End, Jay Baruchel arrives in LA to visit his old friend Seth Rogen. Jay isn’t a big fan of Seth’s “new” Hollywood friends like James Franco and Jonah Hill. He’s reluctant to go to James’ housewarming party when Seth insists that they go. Seth wants Jay to be friends with his friends. The party at James’ house is big: Emma Watson and Rhianna are there. Jay’s not enjoying himself. That’s when something happens: an earthquake? Zombies? It’s unclear but he sees people beamed into the sky in blue cylinders of light. Freaked out, Jay and Seth hunker down at James’ house with the only party-goers left: James, Jonah, Danny McBride, and Craig Robinson. Will they survive? Will Jay ever accept Seth’s new friends?

Perhaps the funniest part of This Is The End is simply the way the actors mock themselves. They don’t pull any punches. Take, for example, the incessant jokes about Franco’s self-made art and the on-going “in” joke of his — ahem — high level of comfort with homosexuality. But once it becomes more of a survival movie, if you will, it becomes a bit less funny and a bit thrown together. They work some good horror film references in but it only gets them so far. The cameos are also pretty good. Regardless of what you think of Michael Cera, he isn’t afraid of spoofing himself. For fans of stoner comedies or any of the actors involved, This Is The End is worth seeing. The verbal puns and the silliness are pretty entertaining.

Corinne

In a previous life, Corinne ran a music website. After going strong for a decade, the site went on a hiatus. Consider her the antiTastemaker.