Tuesday, November 17, 2009

What's The Point?

I'm not sure why I'm bothering to review 2012. Everyone pretty much knew ahead of time it was going to be stupid but that didn't stop the movie from a worldwide gross of a quarter billion dollars in its opening weekend. The best thing I can say about it is that some morons out there will take it seriously and remove themselves from society in an attempt to survive the nonexistent global cataclysm of 2012.

In the first five minutes of the film you discover the bullshit reason that the world is doomed, something about neutrinos superheating the Earth's core. As he did in Day After Tomorrow, director Roland Emmerich treats the laws of science as if they were the loosely enforced guidelines of science. One of the characters, Super Action Scientist Adrian Helmsley (Chiwetel Ejiofor), even says all this is impossible but it happens anyway. Unfortunately, in this movie it doesn't occur to anyone to build a ship out of Unobtainium and use it to detonate some nukes inside the Earth's core so the Earth is doomed. Surprisingly, this discovery is greeted with very little skepticism by the higher level members of the government who normally deny whatever godawful thing is on its way and say things like, "Do you know how much money we'll lose if we do what you want us to do?"

While everyone's running around trying to develop some sort of anti-end-of-the-world technology, we meet Jackson Curtis (John Cusack) and his family. These are the only people the movie wants us to give a crap about so that we won't care too much that five billion people died as long as they survive. Jackson is a writer/limo driver whose ex-wife played by Amanda Peet left him for a plastic surgeon, probably because he was a "plastic surgeon" and not a "plastic surgeon/limo driver." Thanks to the insights and resources only a writer/limo driver could possibly have, Jackson manages to figure out that the world is close to death and gets his kids, his ex and her new, better husband out of Los Angeles before it sinks into the ocean. Jackson then figures that the best bet for survival is to get a map from some crazy guy played by Woody Harrelson that he met in Yellowstone Park. This may all sound stupid to you but you must remember that people in 2012 will think on a higher, more sophisticated level that we in the more innocent days of 2009 can't possibly understand.

The plot, of course, only exists so they can squeeze in all those expensive CGI destruction scenes you've seen in the ads. So, were all the special effects-laden action sequences good enough to allow you to ignore the exercise in stupidity also known as "the plot"? Let me think. There was that one scene in Los Angeles where John Cusack just barely manages to outrun the oncoming destruction. Then there was the scene in Yellowstone where John Cusack barely manages to outrun to oncoming destruction. Oh, almost forgot when John Cusack went to Las Vegas and barely manag...you get the idea. This movie was 2 hours, 38 minutes of pretty much the same action scene over and over.

Broken down to its essentials, 2012 is South Park's head lice episode without the jokes. You can go rent that on DVD and save yourself 9 bucks and over two hours of your time.

The one good thing about 2012? It may keep some people from seeing New Moon. Wow, 2012 and New Moon in the space of seven days. Oh Lord, what have we, your humble servants, done to offend thee so?

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