2012 is 2009's big disaster movie. And what a disaster it is indeed! We thought with a budget as big as this movie had, they could have made something more than simple genre film. We were wrong. How long do we have before this disaster hits theaters? (long pause) It's already here...
If you feel like you've heard that one before, you're going to hear it again.Can you think of another disaster movie cliche? You'll hear that again too, I guarantee it. 2012 clings like glue to the established disaster formula, even more so than other recent films in the genre like The Day After Tomorrow. Pick any part of this film and you've seen it before. The lack of any originality whatsoever is my biggest gripe with 2012.
But wait, there's more. It seems like they had to try really hard to make this movie long so it just might feel epic. The first half or more of the movie involves people running away from CRUMBLING BUILDINGS! And then, they have to run away from a TIDAL WAVE!!! And then, they have to run away from FIREBALLS!!!!!! (I shit you not). It all just goes on and on; there's no real increase in tension. In fact, there's really not much excitement at all through most of it. The best scene in the whole thing is the one shown in the trailers when they run away from cracks in the highway as they drive through it in a limo. Their survival with everything falling apart inches away from the car is nothing short of impossible.
While we're on the subject of impossible, the film actually doesn't even do a very good job of explaining why the world is ending. It gives you a brief rundown of how it might work according to a crazy man in the woods, and that's about it. From there it just goes. It does mention the Mayans and the lining up of the planets and such, but none of that seems to matter; it actually has to do with unusual solar activity, which seems to imply that there was no reason that this had to happen in 2012 as it was predicted.
The film makes an attempt at being very emotional with everything. 'Oh no, my friend was just hit by a tidal wave (sob).' I have to give it credit for trying because a lot of disaster movies make it seems like the main characters don't really care that much, but with the way it's presented in this one, it just feels way overdone. No sale.
I can tell by the box office numbers that it's going to do me no good to discourage people from seeing 2012. To its credit, the special effects are good, and if you tend to enjoy watching things fall apart on the big screen, then you will get your money's worth from 2012. Just don't expect anything more than that. This is a genre flick if ever there was one, and it's bad. Really bad.
Caius's rating: 1 star