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Movie Review: "Disaster Movie" (2008)
DISCLAIMER: This review may contain spoilers.
"Disaster Movie" is the spoof take on the disaster film genre, which consists of many popular films ranging from "Deep Impact", "Armageddon", "Godzilla", "Twister", "Independence Day", "The Towering Inferno", "Earthquake", "The Poseidon Adventure", and the list goes on...
They had already touched upon horror flicks in the "Scary Movie" franchise and the comic book genre in "Superhero Movie", so it only made sense. Not only that, the gimmicks of the disaster film genre is pretty ripe for comedy. However, we the viewers are not so fortunate with this opportunity known as "Disaster Movie".
Thank God it's only an hour and fifteen minutes instead of the hour and twenty eight minutes that it claims to be (the rest is all end credits and outtakes).
You've Been Fooled!
The big surprise behind "Disaster Movie" is its misleading title. There's only a whopping 1% (!) of gags that have anything to do with disaster films period. The remaining 99% is just a bunch of pointless, meandering nonsense. Maybe it should be called "Misleading Movie" instead.
The only references they make to any disaster films period are as follows:
- The opening titles are lifted straight from "Armageddon". What a great way to start off, too bad it didn't hold up to its promise after that one.
- The lead character keeps having dreams about the world ending.
- 20 minutes into the movie -- There's a mini earthquake followed by some meteorites. This lasts for 5-6 minutes.
- 40 minutes into the movie -- The worst-looking computer generated twister makes an appearance for about 6-7 minutes.
- There's a lame attempt at making fun of the 'keep each other warm' scene from "The Day After Tomorrow".
And that's pretty much it. What makes up the rest of its running time you ask? A whole crap-load of unnecessary comedic references (bad ones at that!) that range from (hold your breath):
- "10,000 B.C."
- Amy Winehouse
- "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull"
- "Flava of Love"
- Dr. Phil
- "High School Musical"
- Soulja Boy
- Justin Timberlake
- Jessica Simpson
- Hanna Montana
- "Sex and the City"
- "Alvin and the Chipmunks"
- "A Night at the Museum"
Ok now breath! I'll stop right there. Wait a second, "Batman" and "Hancock"... Wouldn't they belong in... (drum roll)... "Superhero Movie"!? Geez, these stupid retarded filmmakers don't know their genres.
Now, nothing is wrong with a spoof referencing something "a little extra" outside of its genre or what have you. "Spy Hard" did it, heck, even "Scary Movie 4" had Dr. Phil and Shaq in the opening scene; but not just any opening scene, it was a spoof on the opening of "Saw" with Dr. Phil and Shaq as the captured victims. That made sense because it stayed on topic.
"Disaster Movie" wanders from its topic for 99% of the time. It's as if the writer made a completely random list of everything and everyone he wanted to make fun of then crammed it all into a script, calling it "Disaster Movie" (hey, you have to call it something, right?). Right after the "Armageddon"-ish opening titles, we jump right into "10,000 B.C." combined with an overly long (and ridiculous) bit with Amy Winehouse.
From there, it randomly jumps from one unrelated gag to the next for 20 minutes until the meteor shower then it goes back to random gags.
Just think of all the ripe quirks and imperfections of the disaster genre which could have been exploited here. Usually, most of them feature a protagonist who tries to convince his boss and the authorities that a disaster is going to happen but they don't listen, this has happened in "The Day After Tomorrow", "Volcano", and "The Towering Inferno" to name a few.
One disaster film which I believe captures all of the character stereotypes has to be "2012". The protagonist whom nobody believes, the president, the protagonist's love interest who is with someone else, the scientist, one or two kid characters, one of the president's staff members who is a real a-hole, and the list goes on.
It's just so disheartening that this film has no references to any of the big popular disaster movies. Because of this, "Disaster Movie" simply doesn't live up to its name and promise.
Worst Special Effects Ever
For a film that was released theatrically, the special effects of "Disaster Movie" are way, way below theatrical standards. Heck, I think it's even below direct-to-video standards. It's more along the lines of "Babylon 5". The meteorites and the twister look as if they were just planted onto the screen, there is absolutely no seamless blend between them and the environment they are depicted in.
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