In 2012, John Cusack scrambles to save his family as Earth shifts big-time. The terrifying adventure drama is based on Mayan prophecy.
Geologist Adrian Helmsley (Chiwetel Ejiofor) is ordered to the President’s office when he discovers that impending global changes will happen in a matter of hours.
Ejiofor (Children of Men; SALT) and Cusack model love and concern for others as cataclysms unfold. Beyond all the mayhem, the theme of this film is love.
Love rocks the world
Cusack plays Jackson Curtis, a writer who moonlights as a limo driver. A heartbroken everyman, he lost his family to his obsession with writing. Jackson’s world has been rocked by divorce in poignant parallel to the world around him.
When Jackson and his kids trespass in a restricted area at Yellowstone National Park, they meet enigmatic radio DJ Charlie Frost (very real and funny Woody Harrelson). Jackson also meets Adrian (who convinces the U.S. Army to release his favorite sci-fi author).
Earth changes forecast
Frost is attuned to what’s going on (a copy of Your Immortal Reality by Gary Renard sits on his desk). He monitors the radical changes happening under the Earth’s crust and dares to talk about them. Despite his wild-eyed ravings, he speaks from the heart. Jackson is intrigued.
2012 is based on Mayan prophecies about widespread Earth changes occurring around the year 2012. The changes and how to prepare for them are being described by the shaman Little Grandmother and others.
Humanity scrambles to survive
President Thomas Wilson (Danny Glover) decides to stay with the American people, but makes sure his daughter Dr. Laura Wilson (Thandie Newton) will have a spot on one of the huge arks built to ride out massive tsunamis.
Three hi-tech Noah’s arks promise safety for a lucky few, but the flight to reach them is perilous as the Earth’s crust shifts.
Excellent special effects
Over 100 artists created the film’s 1300 visual effects (VFX) shots. Spectacular decimation swallows Los Angeles, Yellowstone National Park, Washington D.C., Saint Peter’s Basilica and The Himalayas. The film is riveting at over two and a half hours.
Oliver Platt takes advantage of the crisis as ballsy White House chief of staff Carl Anheuser. Carl takes over in the absence of the President, but not without a challenge from Adrian.
Repopulating the planet is paramount, Carl insists, but saving his own skin seems to be his primary motive. Ironically, billionaires and governments have paid in advance for precious tickets.
Romance persists when Laura meets Adrian on board a plane heading for China. Amanda Peet plays Jackson’s reluctant ex-wife Kate with their two children in tow.
Beyond its Hollywood façade, 2012 asks us to honor the earth and to love ourselves and one another. (5 out of 5 stars)
If you like 2012, you might enjoy: 2012: Time for Change; 2012: The Odyssey; Thrive.
2012 2009 / PG-13 / 2 hours, 38 min
Cast: John Cusack, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Amanda Peet, Oliver Platt, Thandie Newton, Danny Glover, Woody Harrelson, George Segal
Director: Roland Emmerich
Genre: Action, Adventure, Drama