Sadly, Hereafter is just is never all that interested in the bigger picture, something the sad excuse for an ending (really, it should go down in history as one of the worst) only seems to underscore. There's little mention of God, except at a funeral service, and for all the talk of near-death experiences, there's no sense of urgency about living purposefully or wondering why tragedies like the tsunami happen in the first place.

Truth be told, there's plenty of curiosity about the hereafter in Hereafter, but no further investigation to what it actually entails or how it impacts our lives on Planet Earth. Even the wrong conclusion would have been more satisfying fodder for further discussion than what's offered here, which is, well, practically nothing substantive at all.

CAUTIONS:

  • Drugs/Alcohol:  Jason and Marcus's mother struggles with drug and alcohol addiction. Wine and beer are often consumed with meals.

  • Language/Profanity:  One single f-bomb, plus instances where "freakin'" stands in for it.

  • Sex/Nudity:  Marie is shown in her bra and panties once. She also is sleeping with a man who's not her husband, although aside from waking up together and the exchange of kisses, nothing is shown. It's implied that Melanie was sexually abused by her own father.

  • Violence:  A tsunami rips through and claims the lives of several townspeople (some are shown drowning). Three bombs go off in a tube stop in London, which leads to multiple fatalities. A boy is ran over by a car while trying to escape from bullies (his bloodied body is shown briefly).

  • Religion:  When Marcus googles "communicating with the dead" after his brother passes away, one video clips says that believing in Jesus will give you comfort. At Jason's funeral, the pastor says that he's in heaven and that where we end up after death is commiserate with our conduct on earth. A scientist claims she was an atheist until she saw proof of an afterlife because of the similar testimonies of patients who experienced near-death visions. Marie's boyfriend (Thierry Neuvic) doesn't believe in God, rather he says it's just "lights out" when somebody dies.

 

Christa Banister is a full-time freelancer writer, specializing in music, movies and books-related reviews and interviews and is the author of two novels, Around the World in 80 Dates and Blessed Are the Meddlers. Based in Dallas, Texas, she also weighs in on various aspects of pop culture on her personal blog

For more information, including her upcoming book signings and sample chapters of her novels, check out her Website.