The mother of all disaster flicks

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Either Roland Emmerich was a kid with a very wild imagination or he has realized that nothing sells like disaster. The man who gave us Independence Day, Godzilla and The Day After Tomorrow must have been a happy man when he discovered the Myan myth of the world coming to an end in 2012. In a nutshell the film feeds off the Mayan doomsday prophecy that due to phenomenon seen once in million years where all planets align and the sun's power would lead to catastrophic results. The signs are first discovered by an Indian physicist, Dr. Satnam Tsurutani, who warns off his American friend, Adrian Helmsley. He sounds off his boss who sounds off the Big Boss—the President of USA.

From that point onwards things are set in motion—t he world has just two years to plan their survival but how do you prepare 6 billion people? You don't. The Americans along with other G8 countries decide to build Arks like old man Noah which would carry some 400,000 humans and animals needed to preserve humanity. So how do you get a ticket on the ride? By paying one billion euros or if that doesn't work then evoking the sense of humanity in otherwise heartless people who went ahead with such a crazy plan in the first place! The other plotline involves a failed writer, Jackson Curtis, battling all odds to get his family on the ship.

The film takes some time in setting up the premise but once that is done slips into heavy duty action. The writing is cheesy but then who is listening when you see earthquakes, volcanoes, tidal waves and just about everything hell bent on destroying humanity. At two hours and 38 minutes 2012 is a tad too long for how many times can we see the same disaster scenes interspersed with tirade dialogues. We pretty much get the picture when the ground starts cracking up for the first time and to show the same thing every 15 minutes speaks volumes about the lack of a plausible story line. But why would you look for some semblance of a plot in an Emmerich film?

The acting is decent for a nonsensical action flick with a cool John Cusack and a painstakingly politically correct Chiwetel Ejiofor as Adrian Helmsley. Woody Harrelson as the crazy conspiracy theorist Charlie Frost is thoroughly enjoyable. This film shows the shift that India is enjoying for the film kicks off in India. Now only if they had taken some Indian to play Satnam, we would have been saved from torturing Jimi Mistry's accented Hindi! Sadly Emmerich's India is still a land of missing flying carpets and extinct snake charmers. This is the ultimate disaster flick from the consummate disaster director! Now that he has finally destroyed the world, some thing that The Day After Tomorrow did only to a certain degree, there is nothing left as far as disaster flicks go. 2012 is enjoyable in parts and some of the effects will surely leave you gasping.

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