Sunday, May 5, 2013

Satan Science: Rain of Fire

Stop me if you've heard this one before.  A man discovers that his adopted son just may be the Anti-Christ.  As people die around him, the end of the World may be nigh and he seems to be going mad.  Can he kill his Son, doing a bad thing to ultimately do a good one?  This is The Omen, right?  Wrong.  This is Rain of Fire aka Holocaust 2000 on VHS from the 1980s.  I actually did that Cover Art a while back, not realizing what the actual film was.  Which is the real title?  I think it's Rain, but these could be new credits.  It's not like film haven't had their credits altered for DVD releases- I'm looking at you, Amityville *Blank Space*: It's About Time!  So yeah, this is sort of The Omen.  What makes it different is the focus on Nuclear Power and how they make it part of the 'End Times' story.  It's The China Syndrome Omen, I guess.  As a side-note, Brian De Palma kind of/sort of ripped-off Carrie for The Fury, which also starred Kirk Douglas.  So this film does make some changes here and there, most notably in the ending.  It's silly and unique enough to stand on its own, as opposed to something like Abbey.  To find out if Satan (and big Nuclear) wins, read on...
Douglas is planning to build a large, Nuclear Reactor out in The Holy Lands.  That's Walmart-level sacrilege!

Oh and look at how subtle this movie is.  Nice, huh?
This Reporter tries to convince Douglas that evil is afoot.  He starts to believe her when pictures from the cave end up matching a drawing from thousands of years ago.  Hmm...
You can't be a rip-off of The Omen without ripping off it's most famous death scene, can you?  Get on that, movie!  There- much better.
In the mix is Douglas' adopted son named, wait for it, Angel.  He kind of/sort of killed the mother during an attack and wants the project to go ahead full blast.  What can be so evil about it?
Well, for those of you in the back who didn't get it, they spell it out really REALLY overtly.  Seriously, this scene is 'drive the knowledge into your head with a spike' subtle.

Basically, the Power Plant is the Anti-Christ, with the same amount of 'heads,' 'horns' and 'crowns.'  How does this actually work?  They don't say, really.
The film's trippiest part comes when Douglas has a bizarre, fever dream about the project.  His body double...I mean, he runs around naked and stands in front of some cheesy effects.  Just wow, movie.
We get a few goof, Omen-style kills here throughout.  That said, they're mostly just laughable- like the ones in The Omen IV.  This guy gets killed by a sliding door. does that work?  Is your spine made out of Jello?
Douglas confronts 'Angel' and they fight, but he ends up in a Mental Asylum.  It's the same one where the guy who killed his wife is staying...because nobody would check that.  What is Douglas' big plan to save the day?
If you guessed 'Go to his new girlfriend and just hide in the Desert,' you'd be right.  You'd sadly, sadly be right.  Lame.  The End.
Satan works in very mysterious ways.  Seriously, what is this plan?!?  All I can figure is that the Reactor is the Serpent and it blows up the World.  So Fallout is the End Times, huh?  I'd wander around aimlessly and blow up super-mutants' heads with a shotgun in that.  The thing that gets me is that this film is pretty much all set-up.  It's like The Final Countdown, really.  The film has some amusing and weird moments certainly, but really suffers from a vague execution.  It's also full of issues too.  For example, 'General Zod' below tries to kill Douglas to stop the Plant from being made.  After he's locked up in the Asylum, Douglas is targeted by the guy again.  Um, why?  What could he possibly do now?  What are you, crazy?  Oh, right.  Regardless, the whole film just feels silly.  I do appreciate that they treat it so seriously.  It makes it a lot easier to mock, that's for sure!  I recommend this film if you like over-dramatic rip-offs.  It's so goofy that makes me just want to scream!
Next up, a psychedelic action film with a really eclectic cast.  If it's so interesting, why has it taken me this long to watch it?  Stay tuned...

1 comment:

  1. Pointless side trivia note:

    There's an alternate ending to this film from the 'Holocaust 2000' version, which you can see here:

    I don't know which ending is the original one, but I'd wager the one you reviewed is the right one... This one seems like a shoddy reedit to me.

    Still, I'm putting more thought in this film than it deserves. I'm just a sucker for wildy divergent alternate endings.