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End Of The Line (2006)

DVD Cover (Anchor Bay)
Genres:
Horror, Psychological Thriller, Supernatural Horror
Director:
Maurice Devereaux Maurice Devereaux
Starring:
Ilona Elkin Ilona Elkin
Nicolas Wright Nicolas Wright
Neil Napier Neil Napier
Emily Shelton Emily Shelton
Tim Rozon Tim Rozon

6.2 / 10 - Overall Rating

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Review by Chad
Added: May 12, 2009
There's just something about subway stations that is downright creepy, and this is coming from someone who has never actually seen one outside of movies and pictures - heading down to one after midnight might cause me to wet my pants. So, it should come as no surprise that this setting makes for a damned fine horror movie, a fact proven time and time again with the underrated Creep, last year's Midnight Meat Train, and the numerous other films starring feisty twenty-somethings squaring off against demons / monsters / cannibals / serial killers / what have you in those inevitably-dingy subways. End of the Line is the latest in this little slice of the horror genre, and I'm not exaggerating when I say that I loved it.

In the opening minutes of the film, we learn that select citizens of a bustling city are seeing things that may or may actually not be there. These things, demons if you will, are grotesque monsters that lash out at their unsuspecting victims with shocking ferocity, but the educated folks in town believe this to be nothing more than mass hysteria. Karen (Ilona Elkin), a young nurse working for the local psychiatric hospital, is one of those educated folks, but she starts to have her doubts when a former patient of hers commits suicide by throwing herself in front of a train. She knows something is up when she starts having hallucinations of her own, and after boarding the train that night, she'll learn the truth behind it all.

Well, perhaps I'm getting a little ahead of myself, as she does have a bit of an encounter with an insulting pervert (Robin Wilcock) prior to boarding the train. Thankfully for her, a concerned citizen who later introduces himself as Mike (Nicolas Wright) is there to stick up for her, but unfortunately for our lovable new friends, this perv also decides to board this train with them. Of course, he will be the least of their worries within a few moments. You see, the train comes to a screeching halt in the middle of the tunnel, the lights go out, and it's here that we learn that there are numerous members of a Jesus-loving cult aboard. These cultists aren't the type to simply hand out pamphlets either: when they all simultaneously receive a message instructing them to save the world, they break out their daggers and swords and start hacking people to pieces. Karen, Mike, the ultra-adorable Julie (Emily Shelton), and a handful of other survivors manage to escape the carnage and soon find themselves in those eerily-quiet subway tunnels, but they soon discover that hanging out with the cultists may have been the smarter choice.

Horror flicks dealing with subway stations and the tunnels connecting them are sort of known for their claustrophobic atmospheres, and this release was no exception. Whether our heroes are on the train, holed up in one of the service stations inside the tunnel, or walking down the tunnel itself, one always has the feeling that if a handful of those cultists were to show up, there would nowhere for our leading lads and ladies to run to. There are casualties on both sides during the moments when they do show up, some startling revelations are made, and the film gets downright spooky once certain pieces of this puzzle are revealed. This is the type of film that defines the horror genre: a simple setup with a number of surprise happenings, all wrapped up in one hell of an atmospheric film.

Speaking of casualties, and I was, gorehounds will be happy to hear that the filmmakers didn't skimp on the effects budget. There's a throat-slashing on display here that would make Savini proud, there's a scene involving a fire-axe and a human skull that will bring a tear to your eye, and there are a good deal of other murders that will have fans of the red stuff cheering. I'm not even going to describe one scene in particular that pushes the boundaries of good taste, but in a way that gorehounds will definitely enjoy. This film is not an over-the-top splatterfest and it's not wall-to-wall gore from start to finish, but the scenes that we do get are damned satisfying.

How about the acting? There are no award-winners here, but there was also nobody that I could single out as being lackluster either. There are moments of great acting and there are pieces where the acting was a little weak, but overall, everyone turned in a performance that was perfectly acceptable for the horror genre. We believe that they are scared, upset, angry, or hurting when the need arises, the story is told through their eyes and lips with no problems, and did I mention that Emily Shelton is adorable?

If you share my views on the creepiness of subway stations, you'll love this movie - no question about it. If you don't but happen to be in the mood for a good horror movie, you'll more than likely share my opinion anyway as this one brings the goods. I'll admit that the whole cultists angle sounds a little weak on paper, but when you watch it play out on your screen, it works... it works damned well. The same could be same about the film as a whole. 9/10.
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