I'm not usually a person to tell another person when they're doing their job wrong. Especially when said job is something I know very little about. But, everyone involved in the making of 2012 did it wrong. (Except maybe the actors because I can't ever call John Cusack wrong. swoon)*
SPOILER ALERT: The premises of the movie, for the one person who has not seen it, is that the world is supposed to do some sort of shift of the poles in 2012 but it actually starts two years early. This causes massive tsunamis, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions. So we get to see a bunch of people try to get to China where they are building ships (they call them Ark1, Ark2 etc.) for a few select people and animals to try to survive until the waters recede and they can make a go at it. I lost count of the number of close calls there were with air planes taking off while the earth behind them disappeared. I mean, as far as action movies go, I say meh. I didn't expect any more from the guy who gave us Independence Day, though, so I wasn't disappointed.
The whole story that took place should have been told in twenty minutes to half an hour. The real story is not what happens when the earth crumbles, but what happens to the survivors.** These ships were mostly inhabited by rich people and politicians. The rich people and politicians no longer have power. If they want to survive, they would need to be knocked down a peg or two (or three or four). The world doesn't need rich people in a money-less society (I would argue that the world doesn't need rich people in general but there is some good done by the haves on behalf of the havenots, so I won't go there). The world doesn't need politics in a communal society. What they need are people who know how to build a hut. They need botanists, they need zoologists, they need doctors, they need weavers, they need engineers, they need plumbers. And they need people who will do what they're told. When was the last time the congenitally rich (Paris Hilton, anyone?) or a politician was willing to do what they were told? Wouldn't that be a fun story to watch?
The other thing they would need is children. Lots and lots and lots of children. They are the next generation and there wouldn't be a future at all without them. They would need a lot of people in their peak breeding age as well as a lot who have not yet reached it. This story didn't focus too much on the others on the boats so I have no idea if there were a lot of children and young adults on board, but wouldn't it be a fun story if they overlooked that?
When they considered who got to survive and who didn't, there was no clear cut criteria outlined for the viewer. The only thing we get to know is that people were mostly selected because of their position in life and if someone funded the project, they got to go no questions asked. I don't think this is entirely unfair (ugh, how capatilistic of me!) as the bulk of the Ark Project was funded with private money. If you want the money, you have to give the donor what he wants in this kind of situation. But, think about that for a moment.
Let's say Kevin and I are rich. Like Sheik kind of rich. We donate large sums of money to secure a place on the Ark. Fine. We benefit and so will thousands of others who get to go with us. But Kevin can't live without his meds. If he is not medicated, he will have seizures and that will cause the growth in his brain to bleed and that will kill him. It would not be a question of if but of when it would happen. Will they still let him on in lieu of someone who is more likely to survive? Who will supply his medication? Did they let diabetics on? Did they let people with mental disorders like bipolar on? Did they think about where people would get the meds they need once the world was in ruins? Wouldn't that make a fun story if they overlooked that?
Next time, I fully expect to be involved in the creative process when an apocalyptic movie is being made.***
*Sorry Kevin but you know how I feel about John Cusack.
**ABC passed on an opportunity to make the aftermath of 2012 into a TV show. I say boo on them. If the show Lost did so well for them, I can't see why this wouldn't work (although I do admit that I have never watched an episode of Lost so I could be way off the mark with that one). I could also see Matthew Fox as Jackson Curtis and he just may be looking for work. They don't even have to call it 2012. They could call it Aftermath. Please, ABC? Please? I'll bake you some cookies....
***One more thing they did wrong is they killed the floozy. The floozy must always be punished for being a floozy and must not be allowed to live. In this case she had a sugar daddy and was sleeping with the pilot, she must die. She was one of the nicest characters in the movie. Just once I would like to see the floozy live. Another rule I would break is comedy relief. It always comes before an intense scene. I want to put it after. Instead of Jackson backing into a Porsche and putting it into a newly formed crater and saying sorry to the owner before the intense drive through L.A., I would get them through L.A. without any comedic relief and then have a penguin randomly land inside the open door of the plane or something.