Another sign of end times, besides the usual earthquakes and false prophets: One of the Duck Dynasty yahoos getting involved in the movie business.
Hirsute huckleberry Willie Robertson is an executive producer of Left Behind (PG-13), that already had Nicolas Cage going against it. Cage plays a pilot steering a jetliner when the Rapture occurs, with passengers vanishing and a world in turmoil.
Based on the bestselling Christian novel, Left Behind is a more generously budgeted ($15 million) remake of the cheesy 2000 version starring Kirk Cameron. Last month, Robertson posted a video on his Facebook page, announcing his role as a silent partner on the production, with hopes for the movie's success.
"Like most Christians, my family and I can truly say that we're excited about the soon return of Jesus," he said in the video. "And I'm sure if you've been watching the news lately, you know that that return could be any day now. ... I believe that people are going to make that life-changing decision to follow Christ on the way home from the theater."
But please, no tailgating.
Left Behind opens Friday. Look for a review at tampabay.com/movies.
* * *
No surprise that The Conjuring spawned a sequel but the angle is a stretch. Rather than another round of supernatural sleuthing by Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga, the followup focuses on the origins of one of their spooky souvenirs, a possessed doll named Annabelle (R).
Newlyweds John (Ward Horton) and Mia (coincidentally Annabelle Wallis) move into a new home, always a bad mistake in horror flicks. One night they're invaded by satanic cultists who leave a demon spirit in possession of the doll's soul or whatever dolls have. The preview trailers contain the obligatory creepy child, sonic stings and Mia yanked backward on the floor by an invisible force, the most tiresome cliche of modern movie terror.
Annabelle opens Friday at theaters everywhere.