This Is The End (15) ***

Ethan Hawke, as Everett Lewis, and Sally Hawkins, as Maud Lewis.

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If the end of humanity was nigh in a heavenly hail of fire foretold in the Bible, would anyone spare a passing thought for the fate of excessively overpaid Hollywood stars in their plush mansions?

Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg, co-writers of Superbad and Pineapple Express, have done, and now poke merciless fun at the decimation of the US west coast in the raucous comedy This Is The End, in which the current crop of cinema’s bright young things play exaggerated versions of themselves.

Rihanna stars in This Is The End

Rihanna stars in This Is The End

In the film’s opening segment, Rogen shuffles embarrassed through an airport as someone asks, ‘You play the same guy in every movie. When are you going to do some real acting?’ And at a heaving house party, Michael Cera of Juno fame is exposed as a drug-snorting, chauvinist oaf, who gladly accepts sexual favours from fans and rudely slaps Rihanna’s behind.

There are undeniably hilarious moments in the ramshackle script. However, there’s a surfeit of ideas without clear direction, the tone lurches awkwardly from comedy to special-effects laden mayhem.

The film opens with Rogen excitedly welcoming actor buddy Jay Baruchel to Los Angeles.

At a house party thrown by James Franco, the booze flows, Michael Cera harasses anything in a skirt and Jay encounters his arch-nemesis Jonah Hill.

Then pandemonium ensues as bright blue beams of light scythe down from the sky and suck up hundreds of people.

This Is The End is a potty-mouthed hot mess that scores a decent amount of laughs in between homoerotic male bonding and toilet humour.

A freewheeling, fun-loving attitude soaks every frame.

It also means that, like Jay, we’re left looking at our watches, wondering when it’s polite to leave.