The Quiet Earth - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

The Quiet Earth Reviews

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½ October 6, 2016
If you haven't seen Quiet Earth yet, or it has been a while, I highly recommend this film.

Bruno Lawrence's performance is outstanding. While being alone on the screen for nearly 40 minutes, he easily manages to hold your attention.
½ August 13, 2016
Film un peu étrange par moment, The Quiet Earth reste tout de même un film de s-f plutôt intéressant qui n'est pas sans rappeler la série Twilight Zone. Remake néo-zélandais du film américain The World, The Flesh and the Devil datant de 1959
July 4, 2016
Starts off strong, with interesting cinematography and editing, but after a while, it just biffs it. Best quote: "You monkeyed around with the universe and you don't even know what you're doing?"
June 6, 2016
Boasting haunting visuals, bleak atmospherics, a chilling concept and moments of genuine horror, The Quiet Earth started off as a grim rumination on life after the extinction of our species, and what will be left for those few who survived the catastrophe. Unfortunately, after expending all of its useful ideas and interesting concepts, the film falls back on Hollywood formula and settles instead for being a trite and often frustrating love story between characters who are allowed no chemistry with each other, only obedience to established formula. The love triangle developing under difficult circumstances storyline has been plenty of times, and while here things feel a little more tense and unpredictable, but it constantly detracts from what should be the main focus: Understanding and surviving the apocalypse. I don't see it as a bad film as much as a wasted opportunity. If you want to see an engaging drama about the near-eradication of the human race, watch the TV series Survivors instead. It'll take up much more of your time, but you'll get a lot more out of it.
½ July 20, 2015
Cool concept. Not the best execution. Would not watch. Painful acting
June 26, 2015
I viewed this film on Bravo when Bravo played interesting films. I have always been a huge fan of the post apocalyptic theme in film. This is probably one of the best. I have to give huge props to the soundtrack. It adds to the films macbre topic in a fascinating way.
This is a true Sci-Fi classic.
Super Reviewer
½ June 17, 2015
A really interesting film that looks at human nature in a number of different ways. About the potential risks involved when "playing god" and messing with science on an atomic level. But what do we do, should we stop experimenting and learning and leave things as they are. Should we not build the Large Hadron Collider for example for fear of creating a black hole? I had a conversation with someone of a religious persuasion that said we should stop but this person also said that there was no guarantee that sciences prediction that our sun would die is accurate so make of that what you will?

Zac is a scientist who wakes up one morning to discover that he is alone in the world. Initially he is stoked about this and does the kind of things that a lot of us would do. This includes driving a car through a mall like in The Blues Brothers, dressing in woman's underwear, drinking champagne for breakfast and moving into a penthouse suite. Admittedly the second example is an acquired taste but don't knock it till you try it is what I say!!! He goes to work and realises that what he has been working on may have been a contributory factor to what has happened.
He then starts to go a little bit mad in the head in his own company. He declares himself president of the quiet earth and gives a speech to assembled cardboard audience which included Bob Marley, The Pope, Elvis, Adolf Hitler and The Queen. He then later has a moment of clarity and does some experiments where he deduces that the very fabric of the universe has fundamentally changed. He predicts another occurrence is likely.

Another part of human nature that is explored in this is our inner built desire to be social. What happens if we are denied this interaction, the politics involved in sexual attraction and how we can become wildly protective of this in the same way that you see on nature programs observing a pride of lions, herd of wildebeest or a gathering of chest beating primates down your local discothèque all presumably competing for the female that is wearing the least and showing the most. I assume that such matters are normally settled with a game of Hungry Hippos, conkers or possibly a round of Jägerbombs. How basic reason and sensibleness (made up word) might be disregarded the moment a bit of totty enters the equation and the testosterone levels rise.

An intriguing film done on a small budget back in the 80s and I liked how it achieved the sense of isolation. I also love films with open endings and The Quiet Earth doesn't disappoint in the regard.
April 19, 2015
5 July begins as a normal winter morning near Hamilton, New Zealand. At 6:12 a.m., the Sun darkens for a moment, and a red light surrounded by darkness is briefly seen. Zac Hobson (Bruno Lawrence) is a scientist working for Delenco, part of an international consortium working on "Project Flashlight", an experiment to create a global energy grid. He awakens abruptly; when he turns on his radio, he is unable to receive any transmissions. Zac gets dressed and drives into the deserted city. Investigating a fire, he discovers the wreckage of a passenger jet, but there are no bodies, only empty seats. He enters his underground laboratory; a monitor displays the message "Project Flashlight Complete". The mass disappearance seems to coincide with the moment Flashlight was activated. He notes on his tape recorder: "Zac Hobson, July 5th. One: there has been a malfunction in Project Flashlight with devastating results. Two: it seems I am the only person left on Earth."From this point onward, Zac refers to the crucial moment and its result as "The Effect". After several days, his mental state begins to deteriorate. He puts on a woman's slip and alternates between exhilaration and despair. Eventually he breaks down altogether. He assembles cardboard cutouts of famous people (including Adolf Hitler, Elizabeth II, and Pope John Paul II) and addresses them from a balcony. He declares himself "President of this Quiet Earth", then goes on a rampage. He later bursts into a church and shoots a statue of Jesus off a crucifix. After accidentally crushing an empty pram, he puts the barrel of a shotgun in his mouth, but changes his mind when he witnesses an explosion resulting from his destruction. He settles into a more normal routine. One morning, a young woman named Joanne (Alison Routledge) appears. Zac is attracted to her, and after a few days together they have sex. They decide to scour the countryside for other survivors. They find a third survivor, a large M?ori man named Api (Pete Smith). The three determine why they survived: at the instant of The Effect, they were all at the moment of death-Api was being drowned in a fight, Joanne was electrocuted by a faulty hairdryer, and Zac had overdosed on pills in a suicide attempt. He had realized there were serious dangers with the experiment and was guilt-ridden for not speaking out. A love triangle develops, but Zac is more concerned about his observations: several universal physical constants are changing, causing the Sun's output to fluctuate. Zac fears that The Effect will occur again and decides to destroy the Delenco facility in an attempt to stop it...

"The Quiet Earth" was nominated for eight New Zealand Film and TV Awards and ended up winning in all eight categories. This science fiction post-apocalyptic film is loosely based on the 1981 science fiction novel of the same name by Craig Harrison. Its other sources of inspiration have been listed as the 1954 novel I Am Legend, Dawn of the Dead, and especially the 1959 film The World, the Flesh and the Devil, of which it has been called an unofficial remake. I reckon back in 1985 this was clearly an intriguing and a different sci-fi production earning it´s awards and attention due to that. As many other movies "The Quiet Earth" has been on my to see list since then, but I should´ve seen it in 1985 and not 2015 as I personally think that "The Quiet Earth" is a bit too slowpaced, a bit boring, uneven and never that exciting to be honest. There´s a story, but the execution is not fully satisfying in my book. But, I will always promote and push for productions from my beloved Australia and New Zealand. So, if you are a sci-fi lover have a look and create your own opinion if you haven´t seen it.
January 13, 2015
i like it was very interesting movie made you think outside of the box on the what if and what would you do if you were in the same shoes as the star in the show
November 26, 2014
Easily one of the greatest end of the universe movies I have ever seen, I still have nightmares/dreams of the closing scene!
½ November 18, 2014
It was interesting but rather creepy and disturbing at the same time. If I was in that situation I'd have gone crazy. Watched it on the recommendation of Dr. Neil deGrasse Tyson.
½ October 23, 2014
Didn't expect this one to be this good. I saw the VHS available for rent twenty years ago. Finally got around to seeing it today. I guess I saw it at the right time. It's not great, but it's overwhelmingly haunting. Two of the last three minutes are really, really hypnotic.
September 28, 2014
Such a simple and intelligent approach to the classic 'last man on earth' genre. Well worth 90mins of your time.
Super Reviewer
September 17, 2014
A remake of 1959's The World The Flesh And The Devil, but set in New Zealand. The opening is good (one man facing the possibility of being the last man on earth), but the essential dramatic qualifying dilemma (2 guys at the end of the world ... and only one woman - it's movie gold!) is inexplicably downplayed which very nearly guts the thing.
Still, some interesting moments, though it's better to see the original.
½ July 18, 2014
This minimalistic sci fi low budget movie by New Zealand director Geoffrey Murphy has a very captivating story about the last people on earth. The interior chemistry between the characters take a hit because of a more stalwart storyline and some amateur acting. Nonetheless, there is a certain irrefutable mystique about the whole plot and I kept waiting for something extra ordinary to happen. The film certainly brings out that suspense. The ending scene before the credits is very well shot and leaves the decision to you.

I was actually able to relate to the first 30 mins of the movie where in Bruno Lawrence after coming to terms with the fact that he is the only person alive in the world actually starts having a very good time by consummating all his desires before finally going bonkers. The correlation was so adept and I certainly would have done the same.
May 13, 2014
An underground Sci Fi classic - rather than being hindered, this film is bolstered by its budget constraints. Enigmatic and cerebral, its doesn't shy away from leaving plot points open to interpretation and unlike many Sci Fi films of the era concentrates on character development as well as narrative.
April 2, 2014
While the film's subject matter places it squarely within the sci-fi genre, The Quiet Earth does not appeal with ostentatious special effects-instead it is an intellectually stimulating, character-driven look into the human condition with superb solo performance from Bruno Lawrence for the first 36 minutes and some fantastic ideas.
½ April 1, 2014
'God blinked, and the whole world disappeared'--The most credible, Intellectually Satisfying, sole survivor Cyberpunk Mystery!!
March 14, 2014
Mind numbingly boring, at least that's how I remember it back when I saw it when it came out originally. Perhaps if I saw it these days, I would appreciate it a bit more, but not sure.
½ January 27, 2014
During the 1980's, few genres were as stuffed as the post-apocalyptic movies, and while technically "The Quiet Earth" fits into that category, it is as different as it is ambitious. The movie opens promisingly enough with a tantalizing first half hour that's full of intrigue and possibilities.

Unfortunately, the film has no forward motion and even though there are plenty of ideas and theories tossed around, it never really goes anywhere. It's more scientific and cerebral than I like my science fiction movies to be, and I quickly lost interest and was unable to determine what was going on at any given moment. There came a point where I just stopped caring.

It's a film that fails to give the audience much explanation for anything that transpires, including the baffling conclusion, but there will always be people who will find deep meaning in all of this They will debate it for hours and write pages and pages in blogs on the Internet. I will not be one of these people. Other than spunky Alison Routledge, the cast is as dull as the rest of the picture. Bruno Lawrence convinces as a scientist and fellow deep thinker, but he has zero charisma and simply cannot sustain a feature film, especially one as thoughtful and lacking in action as this one.

There is clearly a small audience for movies such as this, and I may never fully understand why. I need things to be a little more concrete than "The Quiet Earth", and I find explanations to be helpful. I shouldn't have to think this hard to enjoy a movie.
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