Moonfall Review: Roland Emmerich’s Happiest Disaster Movie

Even by the standards of a Roland Emmerich movie about the Moon falling to Earth, “Moonfall” is still breathtakingly stupid.

Even by the standards of a $146 million independent endowment Roland Emmerich movies about the Moon falling to Earth, “Falling Moon(Strong title!) Still breathtaking. Every line is stupid. Any revelations are stupid. Any inference made by conspiracy theorists could save us all if people just listened to what they say is stupid – not stupid instead of serious, but stupid instead of smart. That small but crucial difference is an expression of sheer glee over Emmerich’s latest big slogans, betraying the stupid fun promised by its marketing campaign in favor of a The interplanetary pile looks more like a B-movie scene with a NASA-worthy budget than a blockbuster remake of “Melancholia” directed by Elon Musk. The result is a blockbuster as big and hollow as the Moon itself; one small step for blandness, one giant leap for blandness.

Of course, critics have long accused Emmerich of downplaying the negatives with his brand of destructive schlock blockbusters, and if the world continues to get worse at its current rate, I suppose in the end. everyone can look back on ‘Moonfall’ with the same thing ‘we don’t know how well we had it’, a pang that fills my heart every time I watch Randy Quaid pilot his small plane. he boarded that giant alien warship. But the Catastrophe Master’s post-Independence Day decline has been well documented over the past two decades, and his latest attempt at reclaiming the compound real estate Tony Stark stole. at his feet was just another taste of the same despair. brought us “Independence Day: Rise” in 2016.

Emmerich has struggled to maintain his footing at a time when special effects aren’t special anymore – a time when people don’t have to go to the movies to see our planet burn. Spider-Man capturing someone else’s Mary Jane is more likely to blow someone’s mind than a spaceship shadowing half of Manhattan, and Hieronymus is no longer the most recognizable Bosch. Keeping up with the times may not seem like a challenge for someone who has always been comfortable using special effects, but the current ecosystem has proven unsuitable for an “old” artist. dictionary” has the unique superpower of painting biblical frescoes using advanced technology. When his efforts to combine ancient grandeur and contemporary flair were once thinking forward (“The Day After Tomorrow”) or light on their toes (“The White House Collapsed”) , Emmerich’s recent work has strained relevance in ways as hollow as the Moon itself.

After failing to create waves with the unseen sequel to his most popular film, Emmerich has now turned to an original project aimed at bridging the gap between the birth of humanity and the death of human intelligence in a last-ditch effort to encourage modern audiences to return to his kind of old-fashioned spectacle. At times I hesitate to use the word “reasonable” in the context of considering “Moonfall”, the film is a logical next step for a filmmaker who is always trying to validate conspiracy theorists (from the character by Quaid in “Independence Day” with the basic premise of “2012” and his horror film “Shakespeare is not real” “Anonymous”). Here, at the end of the rope, he finally says the quiet part out loud and thinks an “independent minded” YouTuber is the only one smart enough to notice that the Moon has slipped out of orbit. its.


Before we get to the fun of meeting KC Houseman (played by John Bradley in “Game of Thrones” in a performance that screams “I replaced Josh Gad at the last minute” with every grueling laugh line), first we have to get to know astronaut Jocinda Fowler (Halle Berry) and her work husband Brian Harper (Patrick Wilson), their relationship provides the emotional core of the film although it is almost entirely determined by their slight disagreement over the lyrics of Toto’s “Africa”.

Something went wrong on a satellite repair mission in 2021— Jocinda was knocked unconscious by a swarm of nanorobots that only Brian could see as he headed towards their ship – and his red-shirted colleague They become the first victims of the mysterious entity that will threaten everyone on Earth some 11 years later. Meanwhile, Jocinda becomes deputy director of NASA, while Brian’s life spirals out of control. Everyone blamed him for what happened there, and no one believed his story about the metallic space monster that disappeared without a trace. Every jobless and short-tempered dad in Los Angeles has the same sob story.

Fortunately for Brian, some are still willing to do their own research. That’s what KC intends when part-time university janitors and full-time “superstructurers” use their access to pull the latest moon data from a server. government secret, because no information could be more secret than, um, the current distance between the Earth and the Moon. But on this fateful night, it turned out that the Moon was actually turning towards us for some reason, a fact that was confirmed for Jocinda when “NASA” – the name appeared on her caller ID. she – call her at 3 am. When all NASA call, you know it’s important.

For a hot minute, the film’s unhurried pacing seems to suggest that Emmerich may be taking his time and trying to get us invested in his characters before the Moon begins. fall on them. In another movie, that dining set-up could be a welcome return. In a film co-written by Emmerich, composer Harald Kloser and newcomer Spenser Cohen (whose previous credits include a 2013 TV special called “Macklemore’s Big Surprise”), everyone The dialogue scenes are so confusing and cliché that even the best members of the cast are made to sound like the actors in an ultimate cost life insurance commercial (the lowest ones). in the board appeals to management to acquit himself well enough, but Charlie Plummer’s sly performance as Brian’s unruly son makes his character even more petty than he is while Kelly Yu’s presence as a foreign exchange student living in Jocinda’s house was apparently one of the conditions put in writing before Huayi Brothers of China agreed from $40 million in bank book).

Mercifully, “Moonfall” seems to give up all pretense of creating believable human characters, when Earth’s gravity suddenly begins to shift – everyone in the film naturally receives a warning on their phone that the Moon was out of its orbit – and things started falling apart pretty quickly. Not long before “Los Angeles” was engulfed in a flood of fake computer water, a suicidal Donald Sutherland rolled across the screen to unleash his paranoia about all the “we haven’t been told” things about the Lunar New Year. 1969 landed and KC was joining Brian and Jocinda on an interstellar voyage conducted by “our friends at SpaceX” and the good people of the Chinese government.

Everyone stranded on Earth is forced to scramble for shelter beneath Colorado’s digital mountains (like so many of the backdrops in this movie, like a ghastly reminder of what’s to come. happens when people try to create awe with the very technology used to make screensavers), and woe to any poor soul unlucky enough to find themselves behind the wheel of a the Lexus. After certain points, it’s hard to tell whether “Moonfall” is a narrative film that went wrong or a money-laundering operation that went right.

Without compelling settings, believable characters, or even a sense of self, “Moonfall” is perpetuated solely by the mystery of what really goes on with (and within) the Moon. moon, despite the fact that almost everything in KC’s crackpot theories turns out to be true has a suspense-busting way. Worse is the adversity that Emmerich continues to answer down deeper into the field, as he repeatedly cuts through the core trilogy’s mission to go to the center of the Moon to continue cosplaying again.” The Last of Us” by Michael Peña Earth.

Nothing invests you in a scene of scavengers scrambling for gas station supplies like the realization that – at that very moment – some of the film’s other characters are learning basic secrets. about the origin of life on Earth. “Everything we thought we knew about the nature of the universe has disappeared out of the window,” notes Berry. And by the time “Moonfall” comes to its final moments lazily, it’s clear that we’ll never get that knowledge back.

Grade: EASY

Lionsgate will release “Moonfall” in theaters on Friday, February 4.

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Olly Dawes

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