TRIPE. BUT HIGH QUALITY TRIPE.
I have been meaning to see Troy
ever since that amazing teaser trailer showing one Greek galley sailing along, and then the pull back to reveal many Greek galleys, and then the pull back to reveal an entire ocean covered with Greek galleys. (Though, I have to point out, why weren't the oarsmen pulling? And didn't Homer call them "black ships"?) And then the movie tanked and every right thinking individual came out against the movie for being Bad. Tonight, however, for the first time since arriving in Cape Town I had a little time for a movie after taking a pass at the latest script, and I noted that (a) the IMDB is giving it a 7.1, which is pretty darn good and (b) all the lines quoted on the IMDB quotes page are lines I would have been perfectly happy to write myself.
That's when I notice that the movie last shows at 8:30 pm and it is already 8:45. So, off I go to The Day After Tomorrow
This movie is about the highest quality trash out there at the moment. Sure, you can compare it to 1970's disaster flicks. But I can't, 'cause I never saw them. But you have the multiple story lines following various people caught up in the cataclysm. You have the every conceivable form of jeopardy (tsunami, freak subzero downdraft, multiple Force 5 tornados). You have two kids falling in love, two divorced people remembering how much they love each other, a few clueless politicians learning how wrong they are (dead ringers for Dick Cheney and the Shrub, because Roland Emmerich is German and can get away with that). And most important, you have the main character (of course a climatologist) setting off on an entirely unnecessary rescue mission against all odds of his son, who does not actually need rescuing, which rescue mission kills one of his best friends; but we are meant to cheer at the unnecessary rescue mission.
Still, for sheer spectacle the movie is hard to beat. The most terrifying shot, actually, was not the monster wave dousing Lady LIberty, nor the monster storms, nor the neat shot of glacier-covered North America... it was the shot of the sky over Manhattan darkening as millions of birds got the Hell out of Dodge. You know
that can't be good.
Perhaps AO Scott summed it up best in the Times
: "The Day After Tomorrow" is rated Pg-13. Millions of people die, but nobody swears, copulates, undresses or takes drugs.