Wednesday November 11th 2009

Roland Emmerich’s 2012 has been a long time coming. We first saw the teaser trailer back in November 2008 (doesn’t time fly etc etc etc) and to be honest readers, we’d never been so excited. It promised all the standard Emmerich madness as well as a hint of subtlety unfamiliar to his work. What it delivered was something else entirely.

On a basic level, 2012 is set three years into the future and tells the story of a neglectful father (how mind-bendingly original) played by John Cusack, who must fight for his family’s survival as the world comes to the catastrophic end predicted by ancient Mayan calendars. It’s obviously a massive-budget affair and when you actually think about it, only Roland Emmerich could get away with taking $260,000,000 of studio money and bringing back a 158 FUCKING MINUTES LONG movie who’s three biggest stars are John Cusack, Amanda Peet and Chiwetel Ejiofor.

All the major disaster movie must-haves are there:

  • The same ‘approaching danger’ scene played out a thousand times in a row.
  • Boring emotional bits in between.
  • A black president (which just seems weird now) played by Danny Glover.
  • Scientists standing (NOT SITTING) at computers saying ‘Sir, I think you need to see this’.

But make no mistake: 2012 is a whole new level of disaster movie ridiculousness. Remember that scene in The Day After Tomorrow where Jake Gyllenhaal is physically chased down a corridor by ‘the cold’? Well that would look like cinéma vérité in comparison with 2012.

Awful, amazing, irritating.