End of Days

Director:Peter Hyams
Writer:Andrew Marlowe
Universal Pictures; R; 115 minutes
Cast:Arnold Schwarzenegger, Gabriel Byrne, Robin Tunney

There's a moment in End of Days when Arnold Schwarzenegger's character sits alone in his apartment, gun in hand, contemplating suicide after the murder of his wife and daughter. He was too busy being a cop too protect them... It could be an ad for gun control (the circle of violence never ends) or the NRA (he's lamenting the fact that he didn't guard his family). Where does the blame fall—the burgla'rs gun? Arnold's gun? He decides to live and prevent the devil from ending the world.

"Is this your daughter?" asks Satan of a man whose soul is for sale. "Is this your wife?" The film immediately cuts to a scene of the devil in bed with aforementioned spouse, while her daughter stands by, holding her mother's hand. It's that type of movie. Christine York (Robin Tunney) had the misfortune of being raised by a devil-worshipping stepmother, and now Satan (Gabriel Byrne, defrocked from Stigmata priestdom) must impregnate her before the new millennium. Apocalypse, bad puns, sham mysticism, and only the thinnest ghost of a plot. As Schwarzenegger flicks go, this one's struggling to get in to the top 10.

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