Image copyright © by Marcus Trahan



If you’ve seen The Towering Inferno and Die Hard, you really don’t need to see this one, because it is exactly like those two much superior films. I think it’s kind of sad to notice how CGI has changed the action movie … and not always for the best. To me, the huge and totally unbelievable effects in a movie like this just become one boring exercise after another. Is it because I know that nothing really happened, it was all done by 10,000 Vietnamese and Indian and Singaporean gnomes sitting in dark rooms in front of computer screens, laboriously manipulating images frame-by-frame, and not by Hollywood stunt performers and pyro-technicians and so forth? Why should that matter? I’m not sure, except to know that, back in 1974 and 1988, you knew the things that happened were possible … because you just saw someone do it! Here, all that really happened was Dwayne Johnson dangling by one hand in front of a big green screen with a fan blowing smoke over him. The director shouts “cut!” and says “Okay, show him 235 floors above Abu Dhabi or wherever the fuck this is happening, we fill in the fire and everything else in the computer.” Really, when you have been playing “can you top this?” for as many years as low-talent directors have been doing it now, you’ve actually seen everything. There’s nothing left but variations on the same old perilous situation.