Here’s what you know going into a movie like this…the guy WILL get the girl, the dog WILL survive and there WILL be at least 3 situations where the hero narrowly escapes. One of these things does NOT happen in “2012”, but I’m not sayin’ which one. “2012” is the latest disaster flick from Roland Emmerich, the same director that gave us “The Day After Tomorrow”, “Independence Day” & “Godzilla”. And to say that he goes far above anything he has ever done is an understatement.
Look…if you’re looking for a plot, forget it. There is only one reason to see this movie and that is to see stuff go to hell in a handbasket. No one does that better than Emmerich and let me tell you this…this movie is an amazing sight to behold! The computer generated graphics are unlike anything I’ve ever seen before with historic monuments crashing, the tallest buildings falling and the earth’s crust shifting and creating tidal waves so big, you are afraid you might get wet if you sit too close to the screen! It’s really is amazing what can be done by computers these days and sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. For “2012”…it definitely works.
But here’s the catch…it’s the only thing this movie has going for it. Not that the performances aren’t good. John Cusack plays a novelist who is trying to get his family to safety. Amanda Peet plays his ex-wife. Danny Glover tackles the role of playing The President. Oliver Platt plays the bad guy. And even Woody Harrelson shows up for a few scenes as a crazed radio prognosticator. All the character’s in “2012” have a role. Unfortuntely there are a few too many roles and not enough plot to carry them.
Emmerich and company cram so many characters into 2.5 hours of movie that trying to get to know any of them is pointless. There are entire scenes set up with characters who were written into the film for really no purpose than to eat up time and allow more destruction to happen. That is unfortunate for the actors who play in those roles because there are really some very talented people involved in the film, but with so much being packed in, certain characters are left by the roadside. And that is why I would recommend that if you have any plans to see this film, you should definitely see it on the big screen. Because the fun of seeing it is in the sheer enormity of the destruction, not the human element. I’m sure that once this movie comes out on DVD, it will be a huge disappointment on your television at home, whether you have a large screen or not. Seriously, if you have a chance, see “2012” on an IMAX screen as soon as possible…and then you never have to see it again.
Overall Rating: B-