Over the last 10 years, I’ve gone off films. (That said, might as well add that I can’t be bothered with TV either.)
So, with that introduction you might be surprised that the last two Saturday’s I’ve vegged out in front of a couple of movies. Sadly, both experiences only confirmed some of the reasons why you won’t catch me running to the cinema, Blockbuster or ilovefilm.com very soon.
Last night was the big budget, effects-laden 2012. A bit unfair to judge the state of filming by such dross, I know. But, I used to enjoy this kind of thing. At the time, I liked, for example, Total Recall, The Fifth Element, Men in Black and Independence Day. And, I’ve been first in the queue to most of the Star Trek series.
I realise that with the likes of 2012 you’re deposit your brain in the fridge for a couple of hours. But, boy did I struggle. It’s not so much the lack of scientific foundation for the premise of the story. What irritated me was:
- endless succession of “OMG, how are we going to get out of this” “cliffhangers”
- totally unbelievable idea (even without your grey matter working) that a few people could keep knowledge of the end of the world secret for the best part of three years
- computers that process instantaneously – no “blue screens of death” here
- cheering when the guy that saves the ass of the “chosen ones” survives: hey, didn’t five billion people just drown?
The final nail in the coffin for this bloated B-movie was that the plot was almost entirely a rip off of one of my favourite sci-fi films, George Pal’s visionary When Worlds Collide. (Chuck in a nod to the Poseidon Adventure too.)
Woody Harrelson as the apocalyptic-nutter was a minor saving-grace.
Alright, I’m carping. It was Hollywood. It’s excusable. Well, I wish I’d turned it off and read a book.
A week earlier, I sat down to watch the highly acclaimed District 9. And, do you know what? I didn’t think District was much better than 2012. The plot had more holes than a block of Emmenthal. It was a film that couldn’t decide on its voice. One minute it was first person, the next it was CCTV, then documentary. Yeah, I got the Apartheid references – they were written in letters 150 feet high. To my jaded eyes, it was just another shoot-’em-up, the difference being that the slimy monsters were the good guys.
I’ve become a miserable old coot. :-(