The Remaining Blu-ray review
The recorded footage shows flag football on the beach, partying at the bar, dressing up for Halloween…Cut to years later, with Tommy (Johnny Pacar, 2012 horror flick PLAYBACK) running around the hotel looking for last-minute advice for his best friend, Dan (Bryan Dechart, the ABC family series JANE BY DESIGN), on his wedding day.
It’s a lovely ceremony and all goes as planned: vows are exchanged, rings are placed, first kisses are planted. The reception is also a hit, with a thoughtful best man speech and a prayer from Skylar (Alexa Vega, who played Carmen Cortez in the SPY KIDS series)’s father. When he’s on camera, he tells his daughter that the affair was “absolutely perfect.”
At that moment, the room grows cold and the parents pass out. In the ballroom, the power is out and several guests are on the floor. The building rumbles and starts to crumble around everyone. The clouds are dark and a piercing sounds rips through the sky. There’s lightning, hail and winged demon-types. Yup, it’s the rapture all right.
A group of the survivors—the bride, the groom, Tommy, their friend Jack (Shaun Sipos, the short-lived MELROSE PLACE reboot) and his girlfriend Allison (Italia Ricci, ABC Family’s CHASING LIFE)—make their way through the streets and towards a church. It’s there that they meet Pastor Shay (John Pyper-Ferguson, who notable television credits include BROTHERS & SISTERS and BATTLESTAR GALACTICA spinoff CAPRICA), who has a thing or hundred to say about the situation.
THE REMAINING plays as mashup of disaster and horror movies, but also makes no secret of its agenda. The characters give up their quest for survival as their main goal and instead spend their time making confessions that they should realize are meaningless. Add to this an overly dramatic sermon from the pastor and the viewer gets a better idea of why THE REMAINING was written.
As for the scares, director Casey La Scala (2003’s GRIND; he serves as a producer on 2015’s AMITYVILLE: THE AWAKENING) utilizes tactics such as the much-recycled device of handheld camcorders (meant to add to the tension, but is only a distraction and really serves no purpose to the overall story), night vision sequences (which help La Scala cheat some scares out of the audience) and sudden loud noises (which only show that the sound team knew how to slide the levers to the max).
Despite the amount of cheap scares that rush the screen, THE REMAINING actually has some genuinely spooky moments, like when two teams of kids collapse while playing basketball or when a family collapses while playing on swings in the park.
But these are too few and the movie ultimately suffers from its focus on the cause of the destruction rather than the effects of the damage, and so there are far more scenes of expository ramblings than of images of the world falling apart. This takes too much away from the horror/disaster aspects.
Video: 1.85:1 in 1080p with MPEG-4 AVC codec. The image has an occasionally soft look to it, but overall, details are stable and the blacks are strong.
Audio: English 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio; French 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio; Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital. Subtitles in English, French and Spanish. The audio is quite good, with clean dialogue and powerful (if sometimes a bit too noisy) sound effects.
Divine Revelations: Making THE REMAINING (19:44): This featurette broadly covers the plot, cast, themes, locations and more of THE REMAINING.
Deleted Scene (1:48): “Tommy Apologizes to Jack”