Brad Peyton / Dwayne Johnson, Carla Gugino, Alexandra Dadarrio, Ioan Gruffudd / Action / 2015 / 12A / 114mins
Grand Theft Auto and Geography A-Levels aside, how much do you know about San Andreas?
According to Wikipedia, the fault has “reached a sufficient stress level for an earthquake of magnitude greater than 7.0 MMS.” A blockbuster beckons!
Hollywood has had a long love affair with natural disasters, but there haven’t been many since the catastrophic shortcomings of 2012. So who better to rescue suntanned Californians than The Rock himself?
The plot is embarrassingly formulaic. The opening two scenes first identify Johnson as a hero with a dramatic cliff face rescue before promptly ‘explaining’ (using ‘science’) (LINK) that earthquakes are DEADLY *collective gasp!* Cue this sequence of expected plotline for nearly 2 hours and you’ve got yourself a bona fide San Andreas action movie! People should die when they don’t, there’s an unnecessarily evil step-dad, and two love stories, what more could you want?
With all due respect, I don’t think anyone acts, and if they say they are they’re lying. No one lifts the film, not even Johnson, and his biceps are the size of my head. Side complaint: the posh Brit lads. Quick, what’s the easiest English stereotype all Americans can grasp? By Jove! Eton Schoolboys who can afford to be in San Francisco, of course! They exquisitely enunciate their T’s to perfection, each word pronounced with intricate near-German (careful now, EU territory) technicality and detail. As annoying as they are, it’s entirely realistic – I can’t afford to go to San Francisco, but a posh clan can.
As for the special effects, I think I’ve seen better in 2012. There are fire effects straight from the pits of SyFy Channel hell. In fact, I’d say The Day After Tomorrow has infinitely better effects and that’s 12 years old now.
One saving grace means it’s not unwatchable as such. Paul Giamatti’s acting: you can forgive him for the exaggerated performance but he is the light in the heart of the murky darkness of acting talent on display. Another plus is Kylie Minogue dies (yep).
San Andreas is awful, but sometimes you just need to watch pitiful extras die and main characters miraculously survive because that is the gift of blockbuster cinema – miracles on a big, big screen for all to see… and poor people dying.
Film as a Film – 1 / Target Audience – 2 / General Audience – 2
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By Source, fair use via Wikipedia.
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