Matt Adcock’s film review: Seeing A Friend For The End Of The World

Imagine what might have happened if Bruce Willis and his team of mismit heroes had failed to blow up the earth bound killer asteroid in that noted blockbuster Armageddon. The theme song playing in the background would be less ‘I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing’ and more ‘Help! (I Need Somebody)’

I think most men, if asked which female they’d like to spend their last couple of weeks with, would probably include lissom lovely Keira Knightley in their top 10 list – when I got to interview her she was fun and savvy as well as sexy.

So when faced with the prospect of asteroid-related complete destruction, loser-in-love Dodge (Steve Carell) doesn’t complain too much when he finds himself on a road trip with kooky potential last chance love interest Penny (Knightley).

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Seeking A Friend For The End Of The World is a odd mixture of romantic comedy and end-of-the-world-weep-em-up from Lorene ‘Nick and Nora’s Infinite Playlist’ Scafaria.

The film raises lots of ‘What would you do with your last few weeks?’ questions and has some fun showing various reactions to the oncoming extinction level event.

Most of the big laughs come from things like the deteriorating news coverage, which sees presenters swearing straight-faced to camera.

Dodge and Penny make for a nice enough odd couple with just enough chemistry to let viewers overlook their obvious disparity in age, attractiveness and lifestyle and knuckle down for an acceptably amusing end of days romp. The duo’s travels see them run into weird and wacky characters which including Penny’s needy ex-boyfriend, a depressed loner who mistakes Dodge for a hit-man he has ordered to kill him and a restaurant where the staff are keen to see out their last days in an orgy of hedonism.

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There are moments of peril as rioting, looting and raping gangs rampage through the fast unraveling urban areas but overall the film isn’t trying to delve too deep into the dark heart of human nature.

The script and plotting are fine if not groundbreaking and the cast are all good – even if Carell gives me the inadvertent creeps when he’s not playing funny roles. Keira is gorgeous as ever – and less annoying than you might think as a free spirited goodtime girl.

Seeking a Friend for the End of the World is by no means a classic but it does offer a different take on the both the apocalypse and your average by-the-numbers rom-com.

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