Tonight I saw 2012, starring John Cusack and Chiwetel Ejiofor.
Let me first state: it's completely ridiculous.
John Cusack plays author Jackson Curtis who seems to be late for everything in life: work, picking his kids up for a camping trip, saving his family from apocalyptic catastrophe, etc. When we meet him, he has overslept and is rushing to his ex-wife's house to collect the children for a Yellowstone expedition.
Chiwetel Ejiofor plays a geologist who we first meet in India, where he's visiting his friend, an astrophysicist, and working on a serious government assignment.
Uh-oh. The earth isn't behaving like it's supposed to. The "earth crust displacement" (a real-life theory by a 1950s American scientist) isn't supposed to go down for at least a few more years, but temperatures are heating up so it's time to crash a party in Washington, D.C. and let the head honchos know.
As you can imagine, this doesn't go down well across the globe. And it all falls on the U.S. (though it was the Indian astrophysicist who really cracked the case) to organize the evacuations and sell tickets aboard monster ships built to withstand the disastrous impact.
Luckily for audience members, 2012 looks a whole lot like 2009, so it's relatable. The Terminator is still the Governor of California, the President is still black and grocery stores are even stocking the same issues of Rolling Stone (I noticed one on the shelf that featured U2 promoting their album No Line on the Horizon, which came out earlier this year).
It's not hard to imagine how greatly we'd all freak out if confronted with such havoc because like the citizens in the movie, they gave us no time to prepare.
But that's when it gets fun.
After a cameo from Woody Harrelson (as a crazy hippie with all the answers) and a few establishing scenes to let us know Cusack isn't winning any Father of the Year awards, we have liftoff as California falls off into the ocean (literally).
Luckily, Jackson is able to get his family (and his ex's boyfriend) into a rented airplane in the nick of time to escape the destruction. These scenes aren't as suspenseful as they should be (how could they not make it out when the movie's barely begun), but I'll be happy to admit I enjoyed the effects immensely.
After California is gone, we see Vegas go and then other handpicked cities/monuments that are cool to watch explode. I must emphasize: if you like explosions, this is the film for you!
In between massive explosions you'll find cheesy one-liners, awkward 'almost' romances, brave kids, regretful parents, asshole government reps, righteous scientists and repeated product placement (Bentley™ and Pull-Ups® must've spent a fortune).
I spent more time laughing than I did recoiling in horror or gasping in surprise. But that's okay—I still had a good time at the end of the world.