A Guide to Apocalyptic Cinema

By Charles P. Mitchell | Go to book overview

Holocaust 2000 (1978)

AKA The Chosen and Rain of Fire

Rating: ** Threat: Satanic power plant

Embassy. Written by Alberto De Martino, Sergio Donati and Michael Robson; Photographed by Enrico Menczer; Special effects by Gino De Rossi; Edited by Vincenzo Tomassi; Music by Ennio Morricone; Produced by Demondo Amati; Directed by Alberto De Martino. 105 minutes.


ANNOTATED CAST LIST

Kirk Douglas (Robert Caine, international business magnate); Simon Ward (Angel Caine, his son and the Antichrist); Virginia McKenna (Eva Caine, Robert's wife); Agostina Belli (Sara Golan, Robert's girlfriend and journalist); Anthony Quayle (Dr. Griffith, scientist working for Robert); Alexander Knox (Dr. Ernst Meyer, foremost expert on nuclear technology); Adolfo Celi (Dr. Kerouac, asylum administrator); Ivo Garrani (prime minister of a country in the Middle East); Spiros Focas (Harbin, his political opponent and successor); Massimo Foschi (assassin who kills Eva Caine); Romolo Valli (Mon. Charrier, religious scholar); John Carlin (Robertson, Caine employee); Peter Cellier (Sheckley, Caine employee); Gerald Hely (Clarke, Caine employee); Penelope Horner (Caine's secretary); Caroline Horner (Angel's girlfriend); Jenny Twigg (air flight hostess); Geoffrey Keen (gynecologist); Joanne Dainton (nurse); Alan Hendricks (fanatical demonstrator); Richard Cornish, Denis Lawson, John Bancroft (journalists).


SYNOPSIS

This Italian-British production was largely inspired by The Omen (1976), in which Gregory Peck plays the American ambassador to Great Britain who discovers that his young son is actually the Antichrist. Holocaust 2000 focuses more on the apocalypse, which the Omen series does not consider until its third film, The Final Conflict (1981). While The Omen is classier and had a larger budget, the series itself stumbles with confused timelines that awkwardly attempts to accommodate the growth of the Antichrist from a small child to his early thirties. Holocaust 2000 avoids this problem by having its Antichrist, Angel Caine, already grown as the story begins.

Robert Caine is a rich developer promoting a radically different nuclear power plant to be constructed in the Middle East. The prime minister of the unnamed country supports Caine's proposal, even though his political opponent, Harbin, plans to use the issue against him in the next election. At a ceremony in the desert, Robert detonates the first charge to level the ground at the site of the project. He then explores a nearby cave with Sara Golan, a press attaché. After she

-78-

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