So I saw this in theaters here in Tahiti. Since I had only seen it in French – I decided to see it once more in English. Turns out I had no need. This isn’t a terrible movie, but it isn’t a good one either. Predictable with a capital P – right down to the order in which characters die. There’s no arc, no emotional development – just burn, flood, and collapse. I’m sure I have no need to unveil the plot because it’s nothing more than the world as we know it will come to an end on December 21, 2012. This is king of disaster movies, combining any and all natural horrors imaginable. The narrative takes us along the path of Jackson Curtis (John Cusack) and the relationship with his children and estranged wife (Amanda Peet). Through a series of miracles he manages to save them and his wife’s new boyfriend (Thomas McCarthy) from a collapsing Los Angeles. Annnnd a collapsing Yellowstone. Annnnd a collapsing Las Vegas. Good thing the boob doctor (boyfriend) knows how to fly planes!
There’s the political side of the story. Turns out the government has been aware for three years already of the oncoming disaster. We’ve got the good hearted President (Danny Glover) who dies alongside his country (oops, sorry if I ruined it for you…) and the do-what-it-takes Chief of Staff (Oliver Platt). Through many generous donations from snobby billionaires, ginormous arcs have been built and hidden in China with hopes to preserve what is possible of mankind. And a few animals. It’s just Noah’s arc on steroids.
I love John Cusack and I’ll see him in anything but even he gives a half-hearted performance (though he is nonetheless likeable). All in all it’s a ridiculous end of the world film, but if you dig that kind of stuff I won’t stop you from watching it. It delivers what we expect it to deliver, and there’s something to be said for that. 5/10