2012

"Excellent"

2012 Review


Gleefully over-the-top, this film takes the disaster movie pretty much as far as it can go, drawing on the Mayan prophecy that he world will end on 21 December 2012. Emmerich deploys all the genre elements (solid cast, detailed back-stories, gigantic set pieces) to give us a raucously enjoyable ride.

While on a camping trip in Yellowstone, novelist-turned-chauffer Jackson (Cusack) stumbles across a secret military operation and a raving nutcase (Harrelson) who claims the end of the world is nigh. Sure enough, top government scientist Adrian (Ejiofor) is advising the President (Glover) and his Chief of Staff (Platt) about preparations for impending natural catastrophes. By the time Jackson gets home to Los Angeles, the pandemonium has begun, and he barely gets his kids, his ex (Peet) and her new husband (McCarthy) out. But where do they go now?

L.A.'s obliteration is one of the most spectacular effects sequences ever put on screen: it's a thrilling chase through the most insane apocalypse you've ever seen, with a handful of likeable characters trying desperately to cheat fate. And this is only the beginning of a film in which these people have to outrun a mega-volcano, escape from a collapsing desert, crash land on an ice cliff and survive a Titanic-sized crisis at sea. All because powerful solar flares have destabilised the earth's crust.

Strangely, the science sounds vaguely plausible, even if the way it plays out is pure fantasy. Emmerich pushes every scene to maximum-chaos, while keeping us hooked with strong characters and comical asides. Along the way, there are cheeky references to every other disaster movie, pop culture icons and real-world disasters. And Emmerich never takes things too seriously; even when he gets sentimental over a parent-child moment or a threatened puppy, there's a twinkle in his eye.

In fine disaster movie tradition, the cast is too good for such silliness.

Cusack and Ejiofor get the meatiest roles, while Peet and Newton also offer solid female leads on the edge of the action. And Platt is funny as the requisite boneheaded politician. But of course the real stars are the effects gurus who have seriously outdone themselves with a gob-smackingly enjoyable day of reckoning. Where can the genre possibly go from here?



2012

Facts and Figures

Genre: Action/Adventure

Run time: 158 mins

In Theaters: Friday 13th November 2009

Box Office USA: $166.1M

Box Office Worldwide: $769.7M

Budget: $200M

Distributed by: Sony Pictures/Columbia

Production compaines: Columbia Pictures, Centropolis Entertainment, Farewell Productions, The Mark Gordon Company

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 4 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 39%
Fresh: 94 Rotten: 145

IMDB: 5.8 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Producer: Harald Kloser, ,

Starring: as Jackson Curtis, as Kate Curtis, as Adrian Helmsley, as Laura Wilson, as Carl Anheuser, as Dr. Gordon Silberman, as Charlie Frost, as President Wilson, as Noah Curtis, as Lilly Curtis, as Yuri Karpov, as Tamara, as Sasha, as Professor Frederic West, Chin Han as Tenzin, Osric Chau as Nima, as Grandma Sonam, Blu Mankuma as Harry Helmsley, as Tony Delgatto, as Captain Michaels, as Dr. Satnam Tsurutani, as Scotty, Alexandre Haussmann as Alec, John Mee as Angry Billionaire

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

Contactmusic 2017 Exclusive

New Movies

Patriots Day Movie Review

Patriots Day Movie Review

The third time's a charm for Mark Wahlberg and director Peter Berg, who previously teamed...

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

A Cure for Wellness Movie Review

It's no surprise that this creep-out horror thriller is packed with whizzy visual invention, since...

It's Only the End of the World Movie Review

It's Only the End of the World Movie Review

At just 27 years old, Canadian filmmaker Xavier Dolan has an almost overwhelming set of...

Hidden Figures Movie Review

Hidden Figures Movie Review

This film recounts such a great true story that we don't mind the fact that...

The Founder Movie Review

The Founder Movie Review

This is the story of Ray Kroc, the man who created the concept of McDonald's....

John Wick: Chapter 2 Movie Review

John Wick: Chapter 2 Movie Review

Keanu Reeves picks up his supremely efficient hitman immediately where the 2015 original left him:...

Fences Movie Review

Fences Movie Review

After winning Tony Awards on Broadway, Denzel Washington and Viola Davis reteam for a film...

Advertisement
The Lego Batman Movie Movie Review

The Lego Batman Movie Movie Review

A spin-off from 2014's awesome The Lego Movie, this raucously paced action-comedy is proof that...

The Space Between Us Movie Review

The Space Between Us Movie Review

While the premise of this movie makes it look like a sci-fi adventure, the truth...

Toni Erdmann Movie Review

Toni Erdmann Movie Review

On paper, the idea of a two-hour 40-minute German comedy may not seem very promising,...

Gold Movie Review

Gold Movie Review

Based on a true story, this lively and sometimes outrageous adventure is packed with twists...

Loving Movie Review

Loving Movie Review

While this film tackles a huge issue in the history of race relations in America,...

T2 Trainspotting Movie Review

T2 Trainspotting Movie Review

It's been 20 years since we last saw four freewheeling young junkies from Edinburgh spiral...

Hacksaw Ridge Movie Review

Hacksaw Ridge Movie Review

Based on an astounding true story, this battlefield drama mixes warm emotion with intense action...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.