2012 Movie Review

Okay, I know the movie has been out for two years so this review is not super relevant and timely.  However, if there are any of you out there who have not seen it, I beg of you to please find some other activity to waste two and a half hours of your life doing. Personally, I think my time would have been better spent sleeping in my recliner with drool dripping from my open mouth.  At least my dog Rusty would have been entertained. If you like enormous special effects and watching the world’s most historic monuments crumble into nothingness, then fine go ahead and watch this movie. If, instead, you prefer movies with some semblance of an original plot and something meaningful to say then please stay away.

The basic premise of the movie is that the predictions espoused by some that the Mayan calendar portents the end of the world in December of 2012 are proved to be real. The Earth’s core begins to over-heat causing major shifting in the tectonic plates and thus, literally upending the whole world.

I went into this movie expecting some predictability and some of your basic disaster movie sub-plots. Estranged family members trying to reconcile at the last moment. Heroic stands by those who can be saved but instead opt to go down with the ship. Impossible death-defying near misses. But, as a viewer I was insulted. A couple near misses are okay. Yes, I’ll suspend my hold on reality long enough to allow those to propel the story along and get my adrenaline pumping.  I cannot, however, be expected to watch 100 “by the skin of their teeth” saves in 30 minutes and still be on board with it.  Additionally, the one token scene where they attempt to answer the existential question of what is humanity and what does it mean to be civilized is just dripping with cheesiness.

It is possible to create a fast-action, special effects driven movie that also engages the viewer in a cerebral manner. Two that come to mind that I have seen recently are Salt and Inception. Perhaps, because I prefer reading to watching movies I expect something different from my viewing experience than hard core movie buffs. Yet, both must rely on plot and character development to be successful. The makers of 2012 seem to have forgotten that and hurriedly threw those two ingredients in the mix at the last moment.