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This is not just another major disaster film. At first I was nervous that it would be and the loud music, sound effects would overshadow any human interest story. Or I did not want to see a movie that portrayed a half a dozen lives of strangers suddenly thrown together and becoming friends after surviving a terrible ordeal.
My dubious skepticism was allayed from the start. During the first fast-paced sequence, The Rock did not disappoint me. That is when I concluded that this was NOT a disaster flick rather it was an action film.
Ok, I admit also that I am a Dwayne Johnson fan. When a man can look fit, strong and act also, that is a winning combination. He is an action film hero.
The opening scene is nitro. Maneuvering a helicopter into a narrow ravine in order to rescue a girl trapped in a car that is about ready to plunge into the valley below is harrowing. Yet, the “cool” in our hero’s demeanor sets the stage for the movie.
Special effects add to this sensational rescue. It is a nail-biter and very satisfying. Then, the real story starts.
Yes, the big screen gives you your money’s worth on the unforgettable scenes. Those who know the city of San Francisco wrench with the destruction of favorite sites. It adds to the personal nature of the film.
The common fear of the Central California region plays right into the hands of the movie director’s takes. Intense moments are eased with family dynamics that are wonderfully portrayed by the talented cast. Some times it is very clever dialogue. At other times it is the interchange between and among the actors.
Rescue and close calls are all a part of this story. Iconic views of the city give empathy. Overcoming past demons gives strength for current obstacles.
Can an action star portray the deep devotion that pours out of a father’s soul? Can a man stout with muscle and reputation let his love for a child be his drive? Johnson did all of this in this film.
Carla Gugino was excellent. Alexandra Daddario was perfect for her role. Paul Giamatti was a winner. Art Parkinson was a memorable feature. Will Yun Lee showed great promise and was dispatched far too early.
It was a very entertaining film. I liked it so much, it might be on the list to see again on the big screen theater. What did you think?
photo credit: google image