5 Great Apocalypse Movies You Should See

apocalypse movies, apocalypse films, cinema, 2012, the road, children of men, the day after tomorrow, mad max, mad max fury road
"At least I won’t have to climb all the way down anymore…”

Before you start building your doomsday bunker, check out these thrilling flicks about the end of the world

If I had a dollar for every time some bogus prophecy, or the right alignment of stars and planets had someone convinced that the world is going to end, I’d be a very rich man. Naturally, filmmakers have attempted to cash in on this idea, resulting in some pretty great adrenaline packed movies that paint a nice picture of what it’d be like if things really started to fall apart. 

1.  The Road (2009)

The Road is an adaptation of the 2006 novel by the same name by the author Cormac McCarthy, and follows a father (Viggo Mortensen) and his son (Kodi Smit-McPhee) as they trek through the wild and dangerous wastes of post-apocalyptic America in order to find sanctuary.

Father and son, alone in a wasteland.

What The Road does best is its dark and chilling cinematography, creating a distinct sense of helplessness and dread when the two are in danger.  Along the way the father and son run into other people – but who is out to hurt them and who will aid them along their path? The most powerful scenes in the movie are definitely the loving father-son exchanges, which offer a breather from the suspense and bleak flow of the movie. 

2. 2012 (2009)

The Mayan prophecy of 2012 was probably the biggest end of the world scare the world has ever seen, all because of a calendar someone never bothered to finish. The premise is simple: a solar flare has been heating the Earth’s core and the world is about to suffer a giant catastrophe – only much sooner than anyone could have anticipated. 

Los Angeles collapses underneath itself.

The movie is a big-budget Hollywood project, and as such is full of breathtaking visual effects and action packed scenes, such as the escape from a sinking Los Angeles via airplane or the construction of great ark ships mean to save humanity. A TV spin-off, 2013, was in the works but later had to be scrapped due to budgetary reasons. 

3. Children of Men (2006)

Children of Men is a work of art, a timeless classic which was on every critics top ten list back in 2006. After almost two decades of global human infertility the human race is about to go extinct. The United Kingdom has the world’s last functioning government, and thousands of immigrants are flooding to its borders seeking refuge from the terrors of the rest of the world. 

The refugee camps in Children of Men.

The country soon turns into a police state, rounding up refugees like animals and treating them with no dignity. In Children of Men, there is no imminent, looming doom threatening the world, instead there is a depressing decay which is felt in every single shot of the film. Concepts such as religion and hope are also explored in a very tasteful and original way.

4. The Day After Tomorrow (2004)

In this adaptation of the 1999 novel “The Coming Global Superstorm”, Professor Jack Hall (Dennis Quaid) tries to warn the United Nations that a new ice age is coming, and of course, nobody listens.

New York under solid ice.

Soon the entire northern hemisphere is torn by violent storms that freeze anything in their path and a global catastrophe occurs. Being a Hollywood blockbuster, the movie really went all in on the special effects that hold up even when compared to today’s CGI shows – the tornadoes tearing up LA are very believable, New York under several stories of water is quite frightening, but my favorite shot has to be the one with the astronauts on the ISS asking themselves just what the hell is going on down on their planet. 

5. Mad Max: Fury Road (2015)

Mad Max is one of the most iconic post-apocalyptic film series to ever grace the big screen, and its latest addition, Fury Road keeps true to the spirit of the originals. It is set in a post-apocalyptic wasteland where water and fuel are in short supply and are treated as luxuries.

Max strapped as a War Boy’s hood ornament.

Max (Tom Hardy) teams up with Imperator Furiosa (Charlize Theron) as they attempt to escape Immortan Joe (Hugh Keays-Byrne) and his soldiers and save the five women Joe was keeping captive. The movie is a rollercoaster of gritty, motor oil infused fighting and chase scenes that take place in barren, destroyed landscapes, and is a real thrill to watch.

Eventually, an apocalypse is going to have to happen in some capacity, but it’ll certainly come after we’re long gone. To experience the real deal right now, you’re just gonna have to settle for grabbing one of our recommended movies.

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Gaming since 2000, ever since I could reach the Street Fighter arcade cabinet. Student, athlete, writer.
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