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16 out of 22 people found the following review useful:

A movie that does absolutely nothing!

2/10
Author: sasazg-1 from Croatia
4 December 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

This is a movie I looked forward watching, mostly because I was interested to see how will the director of this movie explain the Mayan prophecy. What I actually saw was big explosions, John Cusack doing things he didn't believe could actually be done even in the wildest imagination. Except the small part went Charlie (Woody Harrelson character) makes that video blog where he explains in a funny way what will happen to the world, the real important stuff that makes the year 2012 so fascinating, especially the Mayan calendar, who the Mayans were, all is left out, and what remains is huge explosions that left Africa the only continent that can people live in.

Roland Emmerich should have done a whole lot better with the budget he had. A very bad movie, huge disappointment.

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25 out of 40 people found the following review useful:

Yes... we were warned... About how crappy this movie would be!

1/10
Author: Kenneth_Loring from United States
15 November 2009

2012... the number of people that had to see the movie before the public finally realized that it sucked. It's a shame because Dean Devlin and Roland Emmerich can't direct action scenes to save their lives, and decided instead to write the movie to utilize every disaster movie cliché in the book since it was written in the 70's with the likes of "Earthquake" and "Airport". It's a cheesy story that you've seen before. There are cheesy death scenes where after somebody dies they look at the sky and yell "MENDOZAAAAAA!!!!!". Yes, it is that bad. This movie is so bad that even rednecks think this is way over the top. If Liberace were alive, he would say "This is the gayest thing I've ever seen... and my house is covered in mirrors!". Anyways, please skip it. Dean Devlin and Roland Emmerich are dried up hacks who don't know how to do anything but make disaster movies, which honestly takes a bare minimum of talent.

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25 out of 40 people found the following review useful:

2012-overhyped, under researched & total waste of space

1/10
Author: uniqueabba from United Kingdom
14 November 2009

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

So...I saw the 5 min 21 sec trailer on You Tube in HD, I watched that and thought, wow, from the maker of Independence Day and The Day After Tomorrow, this is gonna be good. HOW WRONG WAS I! I drove down the coast to Miramar Cinemas, Malaga, Spain in anticipation. 3 of us had bought our tickets on-line to see the "V.O" version, ("Version Original") so, no subtitles in Spanish, just the film as it came from the distributor. There are versions called "V.O.S" (Version Original Subtitulado) - Subtitled in Spanish. As there are many English speaking people living in these parts, the theatre was quite full, all ages settled down and then the experience began. The opening scene includes an opening caption which is in the original film, placing us at present day, HOWEVER, the film had Spanish subtitles under that caption - IRRITATING, which will be very obvious later. My friend sat next to me asked what it was about, and I told him the film was based on prophecies and the Mayan Calendar, and we settled back to watch. My first issue, as is with most of these films, is why STILL after all that happened on September 11th, do American Studios STILL put the main film build up or explanations of things from a very biased US stand point. After 911 I would have thought the US would have "got it" as to why they were attacked - FOR ARROGANCE, yet here we get a portrayal of a 2009 where the US ONCE again is the policeman of the world, the wise older brother to the rest of the world, made out to look like morons. IRRITATED me intensely. The US President (a black one which I liked) of course is in charge and Europe as minions listen to instruction and do as they are told, as do Japan and China - IRRITATING. I was sitting waiting for some sort of scientific accuracy as to what happens in Tectonic movements, but they came up with some ridiculous "Nuclear" or "Neutrino" ray activity to penetrate the Earth, this weakening its core - RUBBISH. We move on swiftly to 2010 and now things have moved on way too fast with some kind of special vessels being built in a secret location, kept secret from the world. A world which is 2010 has such things as Twitter and MySpace as good communication tools, yet we are supposed to think that 8 massive structures being built somewhere secret will remain that way in this day and age when Iran's near revolution was broken on Twitter - IRRITATING. All the scientists are scurrying around building their humanity saving transport, with no regard to cost, that is just explained away as a "rich Russian" and a couple of caricature "Arabs" paid for the construction of these vessels - IRRITATING. The way this film just explains things so simply was MADDENING! John Cusack is a divorced man working as a chauffeur for rich, yes, you got it, Russians", how convenient. He slowly begins to see strange uttering between the privileged few who have "bought" their way onto these vessels for Salvation and wants to find out more. So, naturally he goes with his 2 kids to Yellowstone Park in his truck for a camping overnighter, he strays into a previously free to the public area, now fenced off, he jumps over the fence with absolutely no security there to stop him and wander into what was once a lake area. Here he is apprehended and meets the main Scientist who conveniently has read one of his books - IRRELEVANT - now is apparent to the plot is completely awash with errors and forgotten loose ends that aren't tied up in any way later on in the "film". Why bring things in if they had no intention of developing the fact that John Cusack's character was a rather under rated author, after this mention, the matter of him being an author and actually a chauffeur as a supplementary job, goes out the window - PLOT IRRITATION.

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47 out of 84 people found the following review useful:

Not quite the end of the world, but more than likely the end of Roland Emmerich's career

1/10
Author: Jacob Bittens from United States
22 November 2009

There are some movies that should just really not be made. 2012 isn't one of those, but its incredibly awful execution really makes you wish otherwise. What was a good idea (though it was the same good idea we saw in Emmerich's The Day After Tomorrow... and so many other films of this nature) had potential. There was a lot of money behind this thing, obviously, but it would appear that all this money went towards the effects. The effects are stellar for the most part, but are so over done that you truly feel the extent to which the filmmakers failed in every other way. The plot is dumb, the acting, with the notable exception of Woody Harrelson playing... himself, is hard to watch, and the effects, believe it or not, are not worth it. I say this not because they were anything short of amazing, but because there is so much effect that you find yourself sick of it. It's not always easy to sit through a brainless movie without good effects. But it's quite difficult to sit through a near 3-hour movie with only effects. The film had nothing else to offer. The attempts to ask moral and ethical question are skewed and ineffective. The characters are so expendable, as you will quickly discover, that it's nearly impossible to care about them. And the few characters that you do end up caring about are the ones that the filmmakers seemed to care the least about, and so they get very little screen time. The camera work is alright at times, though there are a few awkward switches between techniques.

If you, however, are only looking for a way to kill three hours, and you have not seen a lot of movies like this before, perhaps 2012 is for you. If you're looking for anything more to this film, though, you will likely be thoroughly disappointed. Don't spend 10 dollars on this, rent it on DVD, watch it on a big HD screen and huff a lot of propane, and this movie will be your favorite film of all time.

It is a bit sad, because I must say that Emmerich's films in the past, particularly Independence Day, were quite good. This one just isn't.

Hopefully Hollywood will figure out that bigger budget isn't always better movie... someday. For now, let us sit back and wait to see if James Cameron follows in Roland Emmerich's footsteps with his Avatar film.

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9 out of 9 people found the following review useful:

The End of the World: The New Family Therapy?

6/10
Author: jacksonjackson from United States
24 December 2009

Who knew the end of the world could be such a bummer? In "2012," the first and certainly not the last big-studio bid to cash in on the supposed coming apocalypse, Roland Emmerich once again lays waste to Earth and its assorted famous landmarks, but this time it's with a touch of exhaustion, an almost routine finality. Maybe it's middle age (it's his first apocalypse since he turned 50). Or, maybe, it's because to a consummate destroyer of worlds (four doomsdays and counting), the true end of days is really just the final dreary step. Few images, after all, beat that of the California coast crumbling into the ocean like a sinking aircraft carrier, or of the subsequent barrage of flaming volcanic rock that pummels the earth when Yellowstone finally goes kaput, blowing its literal top and the audience's already torpid movie-going mind.

Both of those sequences are given high prominence in "2012," though neither is predicted by the end of the Mesoamerican long-count calendar, from which this movie takes its name if not much else. Weaving escapist fantasy into scientific fact has long been the prerogative of high-concept vehicles like "2012," which omit most of the finer factual details (the Mayans never actually wrote of the end of the world, for starters) to make their own pseudoscientific conceits appear frighteningly plausible. That may explain why "2012" takes a nominally more scientific approach to the cataclysm (neutrinos, crust displacement, blah, blah, blah), though even Chiwetel Ejiofor, as the president's scientific adviser, seems to know that it's all one big joke long before Woody Harrelson, as some sort of apocalyptic hippie fanatic, can pop his eyeballs and declare, "It's the apocalypse, man!"

Mr. Harrelson's character doesn't figure much into the story beyond the usual wise fool archetype, though at least his bug-eyed mugging gives oomph to what is otherwise a pretty unremarkable disaster flick. The real selling point of "2012" is, of course, the annihilation of our planet and most of our species, and, if nothing else, the destruction here can hardly be called boring. That's to be expected, seeing that Mr. Emmerich is certainly an old hand in the industry, having already vaporized, trampled, flooded and frozen the planet solid, not to mention raked in a collective ten-figure sum at the domestic box office. Considering the worldwide scale of "2012" and Mr. Emmerich's incurable tendency to one-up himself, it's also no surprise that here he works so relentlessly to cover all his catastrophic bases, from the pulverization of the Vatican to the inundation of D.C., to the purely extraneous sight of a cruise ship keeling over, Paul Gallico-style, upending the galley and its many digitally- rendered flailing human bodies.

But, seriously, what's the point anymore? Like most apocalyptic trifles, "2012" trades on the doomsday scenario to stake the usual forgettable claims at the resilience of the human spirit (and the American nuclear family) but mostly it just wants to watch the world burn, sometimes literally. The human race is ending, after all, and if that end never really resonates in "2012," it's because not even Mr. Emmerich seems interested in examining it beyond the visceral level. Although he duly taps his emotional well by occasionally bringing you close to the calamity – the tiny human bodies tumbling from a collapsing freeway are certainly frightening – it's hard to feel awed by or even care at all about any of it when all the man wants to do (and wants us to do) is have a good time.

"2012" is a pretty much a romp, then, and, for its first ruinous hour at least, a reasonably satisfying one. The sturdy B-movie screenplay by Mr. Emmerich and Harold Kloser actually picks up in 2009, giving time to introduce a few of the leading men and women who will figure into the imminent end, some of them likable (Mr. Ejiofor), others abhorrent (Oliver Platt as a blustering government bigwig), most of them just plain boring. Three years later, as the cracks in the Earth and the story become wider and more worrisome, more people come into play, in this case an everyfamily (John Cusack, Amanda Peet and their two burdensome children) we're meant to follow while modern civilization crumbles around them, in increasingly spectacular ways.

But the spectacle wears off and the movie soon drags, done in when Mr. Emmerich's exuberant flair for devastation gives way to his seriously underwhelming affinity for family soap operatics and teary moments of worldwide harmony. Part of the problem with movies like "2012" is that even with the latest brand of pricey computer-generated effects at their disposal, such wizardry tends to undercut itself when you stop and realize that almost none of what you're seeing is really there, really happening. Mr. Emmerich is not entirely to blame, of course, though it's nonetheless a wonder that after three stabs at destroying the planet, he still can't avoid the disconnect between human tragedy and worldwide destruction that runs through "2012" like a fissure and keeps even its most realistic-looking disasters from ever feeling remotely real. Which may make it the perfect tonic to this particular ploy of the paranoia market.

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12 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

Horrible!!

1/10
Author: ceheue from United States
26 December 2009

This is one of the worst movies I have ever seen. The acting is bad, the special effects are terrible, and the storyline is horrible. After every scene in the movie, I thought to myself, "Why am I watching this?" I suppose I wanted to give it a fair review. After seeing the previews, I expected it to be bad, but I had no idea. The narrow escapes are so unbelievable that I couldn't imagine anyone over the age of 10 enjoying them. I apologize if I have insulted any 5 year olds' intelligences with that last statement. I can't talk about the plot because it doesn't have one. This goes to show that an enormous budget doesn't make a good film. What a waste.

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12 out of 15 people found the following review useful:

2012 a total disaster

Author: Craig Somerville from Scotland
19 November 2009

Well I'm just back from watching this movie at my local multi-plex. So what did I think? oh dear where to start.

This had to be one of the most enduring movies experiences of my life. 2HRS 30 MINS, are you kidding me? I have to be honest the only reason I went to see this movie was to see the quality of the CGI on the big screen. I didn't go to see it because I wanted or thought I would see, intense character development, an intriguing story with an intelligent script, fantastic direction with a epic world class score. Thank goodness I didn't because none of these things are on show.

So why did I hate this SO MUCH?

No logic to the build up of the chaos.

Cardboard cut out character with ZERO likability or progression. Were they all based on cartoon characters.

OTT close shaves........CONSTANTLY.....

FAR to many clichés, everyone possible for a disaster was thrown in there. Some originality please.

Did I mention 2 AND A HALF HOURS.

Poor script wrote I assume by a 5 year old?

Forgettable score

Ridiculous over sentimental moments of intimacy between cardboard characters. Sorry but I don't care about them because of the poor story telling.

Last 30 Min's dragged and was extremely dull, oh and how long can some of these characters hold their breath?

I could go on.....but won't.

What did I like.

Not much, however there are a couple of AWESOME CGI scenes of destruction.

Unfortunately thats not enough, not even close enough to make this an enjoyable experience, EVEN if your brain is in neutral.

1/10 For the CGI and only for the CGI.

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26 out of 43 people found the following review useful:

OMG2012 might happen. Actually, I'd rather die on 12/21/12 than watch this again.

1/10
Author: thesar-2 from United States
2 December 2009

Funny. On a recent episode of Family Guy, Brian gets a earful of truth serum from Quagmire and the last thing (of many) Quagmire said was: "You know what, I could forgive all of that, all of that, if you weren't such a bore."

I forgave a lot of what was wrong in 2012 but the one thing I couldn't bypass is that it was such a bore. And that was the one thing that surprised me the most. Even knowing it was way too long at over 2½ hours, I didn't expect such Pearl Harbor moments that made me yawn and wonder what the heck were they thinking?

What I did know, was how silly it was from the 5-minute internet-released trailer. I figured I would laugh, or at least snicker at some of the scenes. I found myself doing that at more than one occasion, and it wasn't the blatant and unrealistic destruction scenes. It was just how bad this movie was, when they tried to show "heart" or "feeling" or "warmth." Or at the consistent "near-misses" for our, uh, so-called, "heroes." Or the number of plane dipping.

Despite the sometimes good special effects – I honestly can't justify giving it an extra half star for that due to the overwhelming negatives, I will say this in the movie's favor: I didn't snicker or laugh out loud as many times as I thought I would. (Side note: I watched both Twilight and The Happening because I was in the mood for a comedy and for the most part, I did laugh heartedly throughout those two films.) In this film, I was just simply bored. And also previously mentioned, this movie was so Pearl Harbor, where there were just a few scenes of mass-destruction, the reason people would want to see this mess or the reason they made it, and the rest was just plain awful. Awful, awful, awful and terribly bad.

Shame on you, Cusack. Selling out. Again, that is. You could've been one of my all-time favorite actors. It all started going downhill since Con Air. Sure, he's had one or two good movies since, such as 1408. (Weird, perhaps he should choose more wisely for movie titles that contain only four digits.)

Following Emmerich's very similar The Day After Tomorrow, a million things completely impossible happen within a matter of days. Here we have the very wrong theory of 12/21/12 where the Mayan calendar ends and the world as we know it shifts axis, thus destroying all mankind and man's kind of civilization. Enter in the very stereotypical divorced dad (Cusack here, Quaid in Tomorrow) and his ex, his kids, the new beau…the whole cast is recycled sitcom/disaster-movie characters.

But…that's not what you bought a ticket for, right? It was to see big explosions. Am I right? Well, unfortunately, they're so few and far between, it's hard to justify a recommendation – heck, it's like 40+ minutes before anything happens. And what's worse, is the fake "heart-filled" scenes and really, really, REALLY bad jokes and puns.

Okay, this movie is fairly, make that enormously easy to ridicule. It wasn't made to earn Oscars – though I am sure it's going to be up for special effects, but come on. Try a little bit. Try to show real emotion, real dialogue, real people. Do something memorable.

I expect this out of Michael Bay. He cares more about using gasoline to explode stuff than character development, genuine thrills, emotion and plot development. Though Emmerich is only a half a step higher, he will genuinely win the contests between the two buffoons. Here, he not only matches Bay's horrible movie-making qualities, he almost takes the prize away from Transformers 2 as the worst of 2009.

To sum up, this movie is all disaster movies in one: Armageddon, The Day After Tomorrow, Poseidon, Pearl Harbor, Independence Day, Deep Impact, Dante's Peak and many more. Heck, it mimicked Wall-E, and I should be shot for stating that. It has horrible acting, clichés (oh, the clichés!), dialogue, comedy and thee most unrealistic scenes of flight ever on film. I mean, really, how many lives do these nobodies have? How many times do we have to see a plane dip? Seriously, how many coincidences and luck-outs do this boring broken family have?

I think this was sincerely made for only two types of people: those who actually believe 12/21/12 is the end (ha ha ha ha ha – I've said this before, but I sincerely don't believe in this "end of time" conspiracy theory, but even if I am wrong, I'll be dead with everyone else, so who cares?) and for those who just blindly want to see millions die as buildings collide. To each their own, but I appreciate a movie-goer who appreciates film as an art and not as mindless special effects engine.

And the joke's on you people. Both kinds. But, speaking specifically to the later group, you'll get like maybe 30 minutes out of 158 of what you paid your money for. I'm glad you'll have to suffer through the rest, for the low taste you have.

(Okay, that last part was harsh. Again, to each their own. But each ticket sold – like the never-ending Saw series, justifies these crappy movies. I have made it a point to cease watching the Saw movies for this very reason: I have to stop being part of the problem. For the money I spend, I expect more. And with less tickets sold, Hollywood might actually take notice.)

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8 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

What happened to the Mayan prophecy? Only one place survives in the whole world?!!

2/10
Author: Girish Gowda from BengaLuru, Karnataka
3 April 2010

An epic adventure about a global cataclysm that brings an end to the world and tells of the heroic struggle of the survivors.

This is what the plot is supposed to be, a heroic struggle & epic adventure. But, that was all only on the paper & not on screen. What you do get for your money is over the top special effects, with lots of good looking people having family crises & personal battles & they come together to save the world!! If you think Twilight Saga films dialogues are cheesy, this gives the word cheesy a whole new meaning on an altogether different bad level. You don't feel for any of the characters even when they are about to die. Every 5 minutes, there is a 'close call' that our heroes have to survive. How I hate myself for getting sucked into this garbage. What is more disturbing is the amount of success this film had. With the amount of money this film had riding on it, it could have given us a wonderful insight into the Mayan world & the present world when the catastrophes begin. But, it doesn't deliver. Even John Cusack, whom I like is bland. Everything about the film is boring & the special effects don't save the movie.

I was aware that I should not expect much when in all the trailers they only showed things being blown up or cracked open. But, what I saw I couldn't even believe it, the characters are there only as an after thought to the effects. Ronal Emmerich's latest film had an amazing PR mechanism in place which drove herds of people in & many were tricked into believing that what they were seeing was actually good. This film was racist & idiotic. I am really glad this is Emmerich's last film. He seems to have lost his touch.

Neither John Cusack's candy floss image, nor Amanda Peet's oomph manage to salvage a film that was meant to survive solely on mind-blowing special effects. What the makers seem to have forgotten is the fact that we've better video games today that allow us to create our own endings with similar special effects. Don't even think about watching this garbage even if its for free. I hate myself for paying to see this.

2/10

-Girish, 20

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9 out of 10 people found the following review useful:

A Complete waste of Money, Time and Effort

1/10
Author: axistolife from Hell, Indiana
3 December 2009

I think it is about time Roland Emmerich retired from making films. He'll never ever relive those glory days of such "great" films as Godzilla or Independence Day, and his latest effort, 2012, is complete proof of this fact. The entire length of this film I was stunned, sitting there in the theater watching this latest baby from Hollywood that really should have just been aborted. The main problem with it is: A. Horrible, boring, and predictable plotting. B. Utterly disgusting and stupid dialog that makes screenwriters cringe everywhere, worldwide. c. Acting that is as wooden as a chair-

and I shall not waste any more words describing it as I am already getting bored thinking about it and writing this here review. Do yourself a favor and save the 10 bucks and rent it.

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