“Who Knew The End Could Be So Bad”
December 7th, 2009
Let me start this review by clearing the air. I only have an appreciation for three of the films that director Roland Emmerich has made. Those films are Independence Day, Star Gate, and The Patriot. Let me make me also make it clear that the writing for ID4, and Star Gate was silly at best, and that I believe the two films worked best as enjoyable "popcorn" cinema. The best of Emmerich's films is clearly The Patriot, the reason being that Roland had no hand in establishing it's story or writing its screenplay. For that effort, I say congrats to him for keeping it that way because it turned out to be an enjoyable and classic Revolutionary War epic .
Now, what Mr. Emmerich is better known for is producing and directing some of the worst cinema to date. Relying on mainly special effects and doomsday scenarios to make up 90% of the plot to most of his films, Emmerich has banked his buck with a think tank effort that seemingly tries to figure out as many ways as possible to destroy small models of the White House. Basically he has depended upon the degrading standard of American cinema and its devolving fan masses to make his millions.
Why pay strong writers and capable actors to bring substance to the drowning pool of effects and action, when all the people seem to be satisfied with is just that? Roland figured that out a long time ago, and honestly...kudos to him for that. Making money off from the hapless drones who "likes to see things get blowed up" is nothing he should be bashed for. Unless that is, if the filmgoer just so happens to be half way intelligent and wanting a bit more. Then you may have a problem with how dependent Emmerich is on his fan base being essentially a bunch of idiots. With films like Godzilla, The Day After Tomorrow, 10,000 BC, and his recent effort 2012, Emmerich seems to be more focused on how laughably ridiculous he can make his plot devices, scenes of destruction, and dialog, so they can combine to become accidental comedy classics.
2012 isn't Emmerich's worst film (that would be 10,000 BC boy that was awful) but it certainly ranks high. There were moments in this movie that made me laugh certainly, but there were also moments that made me feel patronized. There were times when I was watching what Mr. Emmerich was dishing out on screen and I couldn't help but think, really? Do you really expect me to take this at all seriously? Do you expect me to suspend ALL common sense? I won't tell you the plot of this film, lets just say it's a modern day take on Noah's Ark without any religious implications. Getting into any details would be pointless because if you chose to see 2012, you are only seeing it to enjoy another "Emmerich" take on destroying mankind, not to worry about story. Believe me, I know that's how you have to prepare when going to see one of these flicks. I tried to do that, and it was just far worse than I could have ever imagined.
I want to give you one example of how this director depends on the viewer to suspend common sense and basic thought to "enjoy" his film...there are several scenes in the film where various cities across the world are being destroyed, one such scene that comes to mind, is one in which Las Vegas is sinking into the earth after suffering unthinkably huge earth quakes. You get this panoramic view from a plane's perspective of the strip and the casino's. You see some of these famous places sinking into the earth, and yet one of these mega casino's (I think it's the Bellagio) is perched up on a block of the city that hasn't caved in yet...and to my wonderment, the neon flashing casino lights are still all lit up! Also miraculously almost every light in the casino is on. I don't know about you folks, but if a squirrel three miles from my house, decides to commit suicide by jumping on the power lines, I'm stuck playing Uno in the dark for at least a few hours. That's the essence of how silly this, and most of Emmerich's work's have been. Check your brain when you buy your popcorn. Enjoy!