For the past two decades there have been two names that dominated the world of cinema. These are the filmmakers against whom all others are judged and measured. They seem to exist on a separate plane, one to which mere mortals such as we cannot even imagine, much less enter. One of these two great directors is Michael Bay and the other, as if I even needed to tell you, is Roland Emmerich.
After sweeping the Oscars with last year's 10,000 B.C., many people expected The Great One to take some time off before even attempting to create something that had even a fraction of the cinematic greatness contained in that masterpiece. This caused many people to scoff at the idea that there would be a mere 18 month gap between what Roger Ebert described as, "A film of wonderful ideas so perfectly melded with images spectacular in both their imagination and their beauty that it makes one think Emmerich must have gone back in time and actually lived amongst the mammoth hunters in order to get this perfect footage." I am here today to tell you that these fears were unfounded and now look like the bitchy chattering of jealous schoolgirls trying to talk down something they don't understand. No sane person can look at 2012 and deny that The Great One has done it again.
In 10,000 B.C., Emmerich showed where we've been. In 2012, he shows us where we're going. True, this is science fiction but, as he did with Day After Tomorrow, The Great One insisted that this movie be so firmly grounded in scientific fact that Emmerich's critics have tried and failed to label it as riddled with factual inaccuracies and impossibilities. Lesser filmmakers would have taken the idea of a family trying to survive the end of the world and made it a simplistic action film but Emmerich's restrained use of action and computer generated special effects causes us to focus not on the spectacular devastation but rather on the human story of his richly drawn characters. When you see it, you think it must be an older film directed by Ingmar Bergman or Stanley Kubrick but no, it could have only come from the man who, in the past, has taught us all to be better people whether it's by having aliens blow up the White House or a monster from Japan rampaging through New York City.
It would be a crime to reveal any more of the plot here. When you see the movie, its unexpected twists and turns will carry you away into a world of pure imagination. It's the ultimate irony that, in these dark and depressing times, it is a movie about the world's end that will lift our spirits to new heights and make our society better. Don't just see 2012. Experience it!