Holocaust 2000 (1977)

You know, the Antichrist gets a lot of bad publicity. Everyone seems to get all caught up in his role in the End Times, bemoaning his pure evil while ignoring his good qualities. I speak chiefly of his willingness to fight anyone, anywhere. Here’s the thing – I may not entirely agree with the Antichrist’s politics or the way he handles his business, but the guy is out there taking everyone’s best shot, movie after movie. In the years 1976-1978 alone, he battled Gregory Peck, William Holden, and Kirk Douglas!

Douglas was beginning a phase in his career that fellow film legend Charlton Heston suffered through in the early 1970s. I’m speaking of course about having to headline humiliating genre films.

In retrospect, Chuck probably fared better since Planet Of The Apes has proven to be a classic and there are undoubtedly fans of Soylent Green and even The Omega Man.

Kirk’s three entries in this dubious club? The Italian-made Holocaust 2000, The Fury, and Saturn 3. Ouch!

Kirk’s a pro though, so he does his best in Holocaust 2000 to look intense, wear suits, and jump to all sorts of wrong conclusions based on half-baked religious theory, some accidental deaths, and a nightmare where he’s running around naked!

I wanted to take him by the shoulders and shake him, screaming into his face, “get a grip, grandpa! That’s all a bunch of crazy talk!” Any fool could see the Antichrist was firing up for another try at the championship as soon as you learned that Kirk’s grown son in the movie was named Angel Caine!

Angel Caine? You don’t need to be worried about some jerk running around with the Mark of the Beast on his head. It’s almost as if the name on the birth certificate should be followed by “Antichrist” in parentheses. The Antichrist may be many terrible and nasty things, but subtle is not one of them.

Kirk plays a business man who plans to build a nuclear power plant in the Middle East. There was a lot of talk about this power plant having seven towers and it was prophesied that this seven-headed beast thing was going to come up from the sea and destroy the world. Kirk goes and gets it into his fool head that his power plant is really the beast!

His son, the Antichrist, has plans to use it to blow everything up and cleanse the Earth in a fiery holocaust! Me? I would’ve suggested to Kirk that he either add another tower or take one away. Then you’d only have eight or six heads instead of the Biblically-mandated seven.

Everything begins innocently enough when Kirk blows up a cave where Jesus’s name is written. His reporter-girlfriend takes a picture of him and it shows a drawing of a seven-headed beast behind him.

This is one of the Antichrist’s favorite gimmicks. He’s always Photoshopping nasty stuff into innocent pictures at the beginning of one these battles.

He also favors the “accidental” deaths of people that tell the star of the movie that the Antichrist is back on the loose. There’s a few of those in this movie including a very nice decapitation-by-helicopter scene. Any doubts this movie was Italian were erased when I saw chunks of head flying everywhere.

Once Kirk finally realizes that he’s in a fight with the Antichrist over the fate of the world, he gets down to the business of trying to defeat him. At first his plan is to force his girlfriend to have an abortion!

It’s pretty convenient that his plan would not only save all of existence, but would also save him from child support payments! A little too convenient as it turns out since the baby his girlfriend is carrying is not the Antichrist at all!

It turns out that the Antichrist is Kirk’s grown son! The very son that Kirk has already supported for 18 plus years! God, but that Antichrist is diabolical!

Some of you may be concerned that having such a dimwit fighting the Antichrist might mean that this picture is not as awesome as an Italian rip-off of The Omen ought to be.

Have a little faith! Director Alberto De Martino (who already had made a movie called The Antichrist, though that was an Exorcist rip-off) knows exactly how to keep things so exciting that Jesus himself might very well sneak back early to watch it!

Kirk Douglas is very impressive and does all sorts of cool things besides trying to force his old lady to have an non-consensual abortion. He also tries to force her to go into a church!

And the Antichrist doesn’t get off any easier, with Kirk trying to strangle him before being packed off to an insane asylum. The loons there don’t fare much better when after attacking him, Kirk takes a two by four and caves in their leader’s crazy skull! After all that, I can’t say I was too surprised when Kirk turned into a suicide bomber.

The only real drawback with this movie is that for guys like me who are mega-strong Christians, it wasn’t really all that dramatic. Faithful folks like myself are pretty much just sitting around rooting for the End Times.

We’re getting into heaven on the first ballot, so all this hand-wringing about plagues, lakes of fire, and Antichrist schemes to blow the joint up don’t really make us sweat. Bring it on, we say!

But for you heathens out there, I can see how this movie might be frightening. Especially that nudie dream Kirk had. Even gave a fellow like me pause and I’ve got Jesus on my side!

© 2013 MonsterHunter

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