The Rapture (1991)

MICHAEL TOLKIN

Bil’s rating (out of 5):   BBBB.  USA, 1991.  .  Screenplay by Michael Tolkin.  Cinematography by .  Produced by , , .  Music by .  Production Design by .  Costume Design by .  Film Editing by .  Independent Spirit Awards 1991.  

plays a swinging single telephone operator who has grown weary of going out with her male friend in search of couples for partner-swapping sex parties. Feeling hollowed out by her concentration on the carnal, she ends up joining a small cult of Christians who are waiting for the Rapture (Christ’s coming back to the world to take his followers to heaven) and the ensuing apocalypse. Her devotion to this group, which eventually includes a husband () and small child, drives her to the most irrational behaviour, some of which will take audiences completely aback. Far from being a criticism of organized religion, this film is a fascinating and intelligent examination of escapism through spirituality, and the lack of substance in people’s lives that leads them to follow any kind of leadership no matter how far-fetched. Even when the story goes into the realm of the supernatural in its last third it never loses its hold on you, and Rogers’ absolutely breathtaking performance is so powerful that it makes the experience even more memorable. Considering the work she does it’s a shame the film didn’t get more attention than it did.

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