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Review: "The Day After Tomorrow" . . .

      Contrived science fiction movies are nothing unusual.   Actually, a science fiction film that isn't chock full of errors is somewhat of a novelty. Along those lines, this summer's Sci-Fi offering is Roland Emmerich's newest disaster, "The Day After Tomorrow".   Hard as it may be to imagine, this flick has worse dialog than "Twister" ( "Look out... It's coming ... Run!" ) , has a dumber plot than "Joe Versus Volcano" and exhibits such a disregard for common sense and the laws of physics that it eclipses even "Backdraft".

          Let's see . . . Carbon dioxide emissions cause global warming. Global warming causes the polar ice caps to melt. Over night, this sudden influx of ice water changes the ocean currents and stops the Gulf Stream. Somehow, because of that, a worldwide storm is generated which spawns massive tornadoes in Los Angeles, suffocating snowstorms in New Delhi, softball sized hail in Tokyo and Tsunamis on the East Coast. But that is just the beginning. In only a matter of days, a new ice age covers the northern hemisphere under some sort of instant glacier.

          Millions dead. Nations destroyed. It's the end of the world as we know it. Thankfully, there is not much material left with which to produce a sequel.

          Associated Press News reports the filmmakers are unconcerned about the believability of the premise. "No one is pretending ..."The Day After Tomorrow" is anything but implausible. ...It's very cinematic to choose the worst-case scenario, which we did," said co-screenwriter Jeffrey Nachmanoff".

         So, why would anyone set out to spend $125 Million to produce a dreadful movie about an implausible subject? In this case, the reason appears to be politics. From the minds of Liberal Democratic California Filmmakers comes what appears to be little election year Bush-Bashing.

         Naturally, the director, the studio and all concerned insist that the disaster film has no political agenda. But, doesn't the uncaring Vice President character look remarkably like a current US Vice President? They claim it is "The Movie the White House Doesn't Want You to See ..." They claim the movie is "an opportunity to expose President Bush's foot-dragging on the issue of global warming." The idea is that the end of the world as depicted in the movie can be avoided if only the United States finally complies with the Kyoto Protocol (The 1997 United Nations Resolution on Climate Change) and cuts its carbon emissions by 30 percent before 2012.

          But blaming President Bush for the US stance on Kyoto might be a little short-sighted. In July 1997, the US Senate passed Resolution 98 by a vote of 95-0 which effectively prevented the Clinton Administration from signing the Kyoto Protocol. Let's see . . . Ninety-five to Nothing. . . . Hmmmm. . . Ninety-five 'For' and Zero "Against'. . . And what Democratic Presidential hopeful was a Senator then? . . . Hmmm

          I'm not sure if the movie is driving the politics or if the politics is driving the movie. Either way, the political finger-pointing is generating heaps of free publicity for the "The Day After Tomorrow" ( this review included!)   Because of that, I am certain that 20th Century Fox will make a handsome profit from their $125 million investment.

          Too bad there are so few Drive-In theaters left. "The Day After Tomorrow" is a perfect Drive-In movie; a movie that has some really neat special effects coupled with a stupid script, massive gaps in logic and an implausible plot. A movie to make fun of. A movie that wouldn't get in the way of the real reason for going to the Drive-In.

Doc

2004.05.29






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