2012_smallposterStarring: John Cusack, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Amanda Peet, Oliver Platt, Thandie Newton, Danny Glover and Woody Harrelson

Directed by Roland Emmerich

MPAA Rating: PG-13 for intense disaster sequences and some language.

Genre: Action/Adventure, Science Fiction/Fantasy and Thriller

Release date: November 2009

By John Delia

There have been many disaster movies though the years, but none as brilliantly depicted as 2012.  Whether the storyline is plausible or not, the film provides a breathtaking 2 hour roller coaster ride.  The film integrates a number of catastrophic events including earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, tsunamis, ash storms and many more into a heart pounding realistic movie of seismic proportions.  If you see one last movie in 2009, and are a true action junkie, then it should be 2012.

The story opens in 2009 where we find an Indian scientist Dr. Satnam Tsurutani (Jimi Mistry) meeting with an American scientist Adrian Helmsley

Los Angeles falling into the ocean
Los Angeles falling into the ocean

(Ejiofor) an envoy to the White house who have discovered that the sun has peaked the Earth’s inner core to above natural heat.  Causing enough concern to notify the President, Helmsley gives the full report that over a period of years the earth will take on devastating changes that may end all life on earth.  Tying in the film with the final days of the Mayan Calendar that ends on December 21, 2012, the story proceeds from there and involves a miscalculation that sends the world into and irreversible turmoil.

In the meantime we follow book writer Jackson Curtis (Cusack) as he comes

Curtis (Cusak) and his daughter (Lily Morgan) avoid another disaster
Curtis (Cusak) and his daughter (Lily Morgan) avoid another disaster

face to face with the disaster and his trek to save his family and Helmsley’s attempt to save as much of the people on Earth as possible.  Other stories include The President of the United State’s dilemma involving a delay in setting off the alarm that the world will crumble, a wealthy Russian who tries to save his sons at all costs, a crazy old coot running an illegal radio station in Yellowstone Park, and many other side stories all colliding on the way to the end of the thrill ride.

Now, I must admit that the film isn’t perfect and the script gets a bit sappy

Platt and Ejiofor in 2012
Platt and Ejiofor in 2012

and occasionally trite, but not enough to lower my view of this colossal catastrophic CGI driven film.  I enjoyed the fun of being a witness to the wild and crazy disasters set off by nature as depicted in 2012. It’s a film where you can forget about the day you are having and escape to that place in your mind where you can enjoy seeing other peoples short comings.

While the acting in 2012 is standout, it gets a little over-sentimental and

Director Roland Emmerich on the set
Director Roland Emmerich on the set

hackneyed at times.  I point out the stories involving Jackson Curtis’s disintegrating ties to his divorced family, and a couple of father/son reconciliation relationships. Even though they are part of the film, they aren’t that distracting nor take away from the amazing nature events taking place on the screen.  Sure we find Cusack playing Indiana Jones escaping one pitfall after another and Platt taking on an unconvincing leadership role, but again, I was not distracted by it nor did it take away from my movie experience.

I’m sure there are critics out there that will tell you that the film goes down

Avoiding earthquakes in 2012
Avoiding earthquakes in 2012

hill toward the finale and they may be right, but the getting there is all the fun and worth the price of admission.  See the film on the largest screen in your community and one with hopefully great sound quality for the best possible experience.

Oh, and the world is NOT going to end on 2012, so you better make sure you fill out that tax return before April 15, on 2013.  You heard it first right here.

FINAL ANALYSIS:  The best movie ride I’ve had in years. (5 of 5 Palm Trees)

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