The end is nigh

Undated Film Still Handout from Seeking a Friend for the End of the World. Pictured: Steve Carrell as Dodge, Keira Knightley as Penny. See PA Feature FILM Film Reviews. Picture credit should read: PA Photo/Studio Canal. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature FILM Film Reviews.
Undated Film Still Handout from Seeking a Friend for the End of the World. Pictured: Steve Carrell as Dodge, Keira Knightley as Penny. See PA Feature FILM Film Reviews. Picture credit should read: PA Photo/Studio Canal. WARNING: This picture must only be used to accompany PA Feature FILM Film Reviews.

Seeking A Friend For The End Of The World (15)

Director: Lorene Scafaria.

Starring: Steve Carell, Keira Knightley, Adam Brody, Melanie Lynskey, Rob Corddry, Connie Britton, Derek Luke, Nancy Carell.

Running time: 1hr 41mins.

It’s the end of the world as we know it but there’s still time for opposites to attract in Lorene Scafaria’s delightfully offbeat road movie.

Infused with the writer-director’s gallows humour and an air of wistful romanticism, Seeking A Friend For The End Of The World agrees with the Mayan calendar, which prophecies the end of civilisation in 2012.

For Scafaria, the chosen method of mass destruction is an asteroid called Matilda on a collision course with Earth.

In the opening scene, insurance salesman Dodge (Carell) sits in a car with his wife Linda (real-life spouse Nancy) as the radio reports the failure of the Space Shuttle Deliverance to divert Matilda from its trajectory.

Linda flees the vehicle, never to be seen again, and poor Dodge returns to his unedifying daily routine, alone in a rapidly disintegrating world.

Until, that is, he meets vinyl-obsessed English rose Penny (Keira Knightley), who is crying on the fire escape outside his window, and asks to be let in.

With time running out, Dodge helps Penny to shake free of the shackles of her boyfriend Owen (Adam Brody), so that she can head back home to Britain to be reunited with her family.

Seeking A Friend For The End Of The World is a bittersweet end-of-days romance, distinguished by Carell’s moving portrayal of an office drone, who doesn’t want to die alone.

However, as doomsday approaches, Scafaria cannot resist a few nods to cheesy convention.

Rating: 3/5