The Man from Earth: Holocene Image

While the younger cast members are all competent in their roles, their characters are a tad bit too meddlesome in my opinion. Their relationship to John isn’t as strong as I would have liked, they just seem like a bunch of kids he has no ties with outside of his classroom. There’s not that undeniable camaraderie between John and the students like there was with the instructors from the first film. David Lee Smith does another fantastic job with the character, especially in his scenes with Sterling Knight. There’s an incredibly tense scene involving the two in “discussion” of theology and John’s existence. While the first one perfectly balanced John’s story with a healthy and expected dose of skepticism, most of the characters in The Man From Earth: Holocene willfully believe in John’s immortality with very little convincing. Even a skeptical character from the first film now seems uncharacteristically convinced. With the healing factor fading and John’s sudden aging, it would have been wonderful to see someone call bullshit on him. After all these years, conveniently he’s starting to age and scar? Isn’t that a little too convenient?  Sadly, the film doesn’t dive into this as well as I would have liked for it to be explored, and we’re left with John’s story and extraordinary abilities as fairly established narrative fact. I would have much preferred the film to give me the option to come to my own conclusions on John and have it a little less evident. There’s still a lot of unanswered questions that are thankfully left vague, like is John’s condition a sign of divinity or merely a biological anomaly that is now going wonky? Is John meant to be more than just an academic instructor? These themes are touched upon, but never blatantly spelled out.

“…this film has its fair share of unbelievably clever twists and turns.”

Despite my small gripes, I really did enjoy The Man From Earth: Holocene quite a bit thanks to its strong lead actor and its mythology building. I wish it was heavier with the mystery and intrigue like the first film, but this series is going in a new direction and I can respect and admire that. There does seem to be plans for future films and the hints and teases they drop here have my interest quite piqued. If you’re a fan of the first film, and I do suggest you check it out, there’s a ton in this sequel I’m sure you’ll love too.

The Man From Earth: Holocene (2017) Directed by: Richard Schenkman. Written by: Emerson Bixby, Eric D. Wilkinson, and Richard Schenkman. Starring: David Lee Smith, Vanessa Williams, William Kat, Michael Dorn, Sterling Knight, Brittany Curran, Akemi Look.

8 out of 10

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  1. Zebra says:

    The first movie was brilliant and should have been the end.. that being said, in reference to the ending of Holocene I think the F.B.I. guy was Phillip.. only he’s not a Fed, instead after running from a murder he committed he later learns that the police weren’t looking for Phillip the murderer, but instead for Phillip the missing college kid! This so unhinged him that he goes crazier and wants to find John so he can finish the job.. properly

  2. Michael says:

    I think it was good sequel , was a little upset at the ending at first when it went to credits but then it showed another clip and left it opened for another which made me not just feel better but left me anticipating the next film.


    it shows a hidden person ( sun behind him hiding his face ) asking questions about John and saying bad things about him. I personally think that the gay asking questions is the other guy he ran into during his journey his mentioned in the first film. I believe that guy is the Antichrist and looking for John to destroy him. It also could be the kid that escaped and had him hostage or it could be christ at the door looking for John and John has been lying to us all and he is the antichrist. I don’t want to believe the last theory just because I love johns character and would completely ruin the series for me. Can’t wait for the next one to get some closer. Unfortunately I don’t think we will ever get closer because the writers are wanting to make a television series with it so not sure a closer will be soon.

  3. John Mark Higginbotham says:

    If they make another one…I’ll watch it; and yes I’ll gladly pay for it. Call me shallow. I both loved the second one, and didn’t quite care for the ending . But, I’m up for the third. Good luck to the creators; past, present, and future…JMH

  4. ZeroHex says:

    Holocene is garbage, the first movie was so clever, philosophical, spiritual even, the plot was character driven with amazing dialogues and monologues, so simple yet so perfect and with a real twist ending that made it in my humble opinion a master piece. But this sequel? What where they thinking? A bunch of college stereotypes stumble upon “the truth” and try to out John to what end?

    The Slutty one tries to seduce him and upon failing she resorts to blackmailing him, revealing that they know the truth about him (or have a pretty good idea).

    The Believer wants him to enlighten humanity and rule over the world bringing a golden age.

    The Religious Zealot wants nothing to do with him until he realizes what The Believer´s plans are and decides that he wants the same but only if John is “his” Jesus, if he is not he wants to stop him at all costs.

    And finally The Mascot, who wants nothing at all and is only riding along for kicks.

    Then we have the bitter has-been who wants retribution for loosing his career trying to expose John.

    And finally we have the “Open Ending” that not only implies/confirms that John is not “the only one” but that the man he encountered decades ago in Europe is hunting him and is his nemesis (If John was Jesus he was Cain/Jack the Ripper/Etc) this being the cheapest, cheeziest, cliche trope unimaginative big reveal ending possible… and they want to produce a 3rd movie? Possibly a series?

    This is the perfect example of something that should have been a one-off and they should have stopped while they were ahead. What´s 3rd going to be? Jack the Ripper vs Sherlock Holmes across time? And after that? Is the series going to be a John Doe/The Fugitive rip-off? Please stop this nonsense.

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