All Shook Up

Last night the Cardinal game was on Fox, not Fox Sports Midwest, but Fox. Which means that there was a good chance that Joe Buck was going to be announcing the game. I know I mentioned it before, but Joe Buck Sucks! So, I decided that if I was going to subject myself to something that sucks I was going to go see San Andreas, it has Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson as the lead so it has the potential to suck in that awesome way that only a movie starring an ex wrestler can.


I had actually originally planned to go see Aloha with Bradley Cooper, Emma Stone, Rachel McAdams, John Krasinski, Alec Baldwin, Danny McBride and Bill Murray. With an all-star cast like that and directed and written by Cameron Crow, wanting to see that movie should be a no brainer. But then yesterday I talked to three very reliable sources who told me to avoid wasting good money on it, and wait for it to come to Redbox, so unless I get really bored this week, I think I’ll be doing that. I really like Bradley Cooper and I would hate to go the rest of my life feeling like he owes me $10.50, I already feel that way about Sandra Bullock (All About Steve), Ryan Reynolds (Green Lantern) and Kate Winslet (Labor Day).


So, off I went to go see San Andreas. I had high hopes of watching a classic disaster film, with cheesy writing, mediocre acting, with a dash of overacting thrown in for fun and great special effects. And oh happy day, it did not disappoint. It is your classic disaster film, with cheesy writing, mediocre acting with maybe just two dashes of overacting thrown in for fun, and great special effects. If you love all of that you are going to love this film. If you want believable, non-cliché storytelling with moving performances you may want to wait until Oscar season revs up in October. I mean come on it’s summer time, Hollywood doesn’t have time for that kind of stuff.

San Andreas stars Johnson as Ray (don’t ask me if he has a last name, because that is so irrelevant), a pilot for Los Angeles Search and Rescue. Apparently Ray’s family just went through a tragic loss and the family has fallen apart in the aftermath. All of this is made obvious by the use of wonderfully horribly photo-shopped photos that Ray finds in his daughter’s memory box….because everyone has one of those. I feel like I need to take a second here to comment on a couple of things about Mr. Johnson. First of all, he’s really not a horrible actor. I mean don’t get me wrong, he’s no Daniel Day Lewis or Colin Firth, but he is solid and can be believable. He just needs to get himself some better material that isn’t so trite. The other thing I have to point out is that for such a big guy, his forehead is freakishly kind of small, I never noticed that before, but it was somewhat distracting last night. Weird, I know, but I just needed to throw it out there.


So now Ray’s ex-wife, Emma (Carla Gugino) has moved on with Daniel (Ioan Gruffudd), a rich architect, who is your pretty standard disaster movie douche disguised as a nice guy. Ray and Emma’s surviving daughter, Blake (Alexandra Daddario) is headed off to college but is sure to find herself in harm’s way as she is stuck in San Francisco with Daniel the douche, while her parents are in Los Angeles. But not to worry, in true disaster film style, Mom and Dad will make their way, as the world literally crumbles around them to find her and save her life. But not before she saves the lives of Ben and Ollie, two brothers from England, who find her, save her, fall in love with her, and oh crap I don’t know what is going on with them, but it’s all fun and that is all that matters.

There is a side story of Paul Giamatti as a leading scientist in the research of earthquakes, who is able to predict the disaster to come, but because the movie wouldn’t happen if everyone listens, no one does and so thousands upon thousands of people will die. Archie Panjabi, from The Good Wife fame, plays a reporter that is sort of the link between the two stories, but her character is not Kalinda, so she can’t seduce the earthquake to behave itself. But she looks as hot as ever, even without her trademark leather coat and knee high boots, so it’s all good.


Another star of the movie is the special effects. They definitely deliver, in that way that only CGI can do. It starts with a car accident and a car tumbling down a canyon and ends with all of California in ruins, and we get to see it all. Throw in the obligatory earthquake destruction of Hoover Dam and you can’t go wrong. We get to see most of the standard L.A. and San Francisco landmarks tumble throughout the movie, although I wouldn’t have minded seeing a shot of a movie studio or two collapsing, but that may just be a little wishful thinking on my part.


The final star of the movie is the script. I wish I could tell you just how cheesy the script is, but I can’t begin to do it justice. They have worked every disaster movie cliché in, complete with dialogue that gives every actor that opportunity to look at the camera and say “YAY, I’m starring in a disaster movie and I have always wanted to say this”. Ms. Gugino, definitely has the line of the movie though when she makes a phone call to her boyfriend after finding out just how big of a douche he is. I know that I would have accepted scale as an actor to get to deliver that line. Seriously people, it is almost worth the price of admission alone.

I definitely made the wise decision yesterday. I got to see an awesomely cliché movie that is so bad it’s good and I missed the Cardinals losing and Joe Buck sucking. Win – Win!!!!!!!



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