Bad news Christians: Yet another terrible faith-based movie has tarnished your cinematic reputation. And anyone hoping that the Nicolas Cage “Left Behind” reboot would scare lost souls back into church will probably be seeing the same, old faces on Sunday.
Critics have taken a holy crap on this remake of a 2000 movie starring Kirk Cameron. This one, also adapted from a series of bestselling novels about The Rapture that the deeply religious swear is coming, has accumulated a whopping three percent approval rating based on 31 reviews Rotten Tomatoes aggregated. That means one critic has written a positive review, so far.
But based on the brutal takedowns of stuntman Vic Armstrong‘s first directing job in over 20 years, it’s hard not to imagine that single critic was paid, or maybe willing to spread the love of Jesus Christ no matter how much it hurts her readers’ eyes.
Since the bulk of the population will probably skip the latest questionable career choice by Oscar winner Cage, here are 11 critical quips more entertaining than the movie:
TheWrap‘s Diane Garrett:
“Left Behind,” a Rapture disaster movie opening Friday, has all the subtlety of a sledgehammer and production values that verge on parody. Intended for a broad audience, it’s best appreciated by the most ardently faithful.
Arizona Central critic Bill Goodykoontz:
“People often ask critics what the best movie they’ve seen this year is, which makes for interesting conversations, and then follow up with what the worst movie is. That’s usually tougher to answer. So consider this a thank-you to the makers of ‘Left Behind’ for giving me a solid answer. ‘Left Behind’ is a terrible movie, bad in almost every way, not even qualifying as so-bad-it’s-good material.”
Entertainment Weekly critic Lindsey Bahr:
“At best, ‘Left Behind’ is shoddily made sensationalist propaganda–with atrocious acting–that barely registers as entertainment. At worst, it’s profoundly moronic. Audiences, Christian or not, deserve better, and it’s hard to imagine that the ham-fisted revelations in this schlock could serve any higher purpose.”
USA Today critic Brian Truitt:
“‘Left Behind’ seriously could have used some divine intervention. Instead, the latest adaptation of Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins‘ literary Rapture-palooza tosses Nicolas Cage into a disaster film that borders on ridiculous and sets up a potential new movie series for the popular Christian franchise. But when one character says, ‘I’m afraid it’s only the beginning,’ it comes off less as a warning and more as a threat to moviegoers.”
LA Weekly critic Amy Nicholson:
“The running time is spent avoiding religion to such a loony extent that no one explains that this mass vanishing is God’s work until the film is nearly over. It’s almost as though screenwriters Paul Lalonde and John Patus believe people might buy a ticket to Left Behind and not know the twist, like someone sitting down to watch Godzilla and being shocked by the entrance of a giant lizard. Who is this movie for?”
San Francisco Gate critic Michael Ordoña:
“With so much emphasis on proselytizing, there’s little energy remaining for, you know, characters, plotting, dialogue … pacing … It takes upwards of 30 minutes to reach the inciting incident. Seriously, 30-plus minutes to get to the thing we all know is gonna happen. Antsy viewers will be praying for the Rapture by 10 minutes.”
Washington Post critic Michael O’Sullivan:
“Cage, an actor who normally can be relied upon to provide a modicum of entertainment, even in — maybe especially in — his worst movies, delivers what surely will be remembered as one of the lowest-energy performances of his career. It’s tempting to call ‘Left Behind’ a wake-up call to heathens, except that it is, simply put, an exercise in tedium. Slumber on, ye godless horde.”
Chicago Tribune critic Michael Phillips:
“Of its reported $16 million budget, roughly $15 million appears to have gone to Cage on a dare that he maintain a straight face.”
New York Daily News critic Elizabeth Weitzman:
“What has gone so horribly wrong in Cage’s career that he is forced to accept any paycheck that comes his way? There’s no reason he shouldn’t make a religious movie, if that’s what speaks to him. But why would he make such a terrible one? The script is barely patched together, the effects are laughably tinny and the performances are so stilted you’d think this was everyone’s first film. Honestly, ‘Sharknado’ star Ian Ziering would have done a better job milking this material than Cage, who simply seems confused.”
JoBlo critic Chris Bumbray:
“I will say this – ‘Left Behind’ is the funniest movie set on an airplane since…well…’Airplane.’ Too bad it’s not supposed to be a comedy.”
The Toronto Star critic Linda Barnard:
“Score one for Satan.”