The Day After Tomorrow (2004)

<strong class="MovieTitle">The Day After Tomorrow</strong> (2004)

(In theaters, May 2004) It’s either growing mellowness or creeping senility, but I seem to be liking Roland’s Emmerich’s catastrophe films more and more. Hated Independence Day, was okay with Godzilla and now The Day After Tomorrow actually manages to be even a little bit good. Sure, it’s crammed with silly dialogue, familiar plotting and dumb Action Movie Moments (including characters out-running a tidal wave). But on the other hand, the destruction sequences are among the finest ever filmed. Hollywood’s destruction by mega-twisters is worth the price of the ticket by itself: Add to that the spectacle of New York getting flooded, then freezing in place and you have enough eye-candy to satisfy anyone. (For more, er, conventional eye-candy, check out the luscious Tamlyn Tomita. Wrrrw!) I wasn’t so amused by the lack of cold-sense exhibited by the characters (In sub-zero temperatures, you close doors behind you) nor the silly way the action scenes got amped-up through magically appearing axes or CGI wolves. Still, there is an undeniable power to The Day After Tomorrow, even if it’s in contemplating a chillingly plausible disaster. It’s a catastrophe film that aspires to a conscience and a brain: Considerable death and destruction isn’t fought and stopped at the last moment; science is seen as a provider of answers and safety and people find safety at a public library, be still my nerdish heart! (Plus, who survives? The gifted teens and the librarians! Wooo!) Sure, the science is intentionally unrealistic. But once you see New York under dozens of meters of snow, hardly any of that matter: The Day After Tomorrow delivers the goods. Consider the DVD pre-ordered.

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