"My fellow Americans. This will be the last time I address you."
Today’s the day! The last day of the 5,125-year-long cycle in the Mesoamerican Long Count calendar has arrived.
What does that mean to you? Well, for the vast majority of you, not a whole lot. That is, unless you actually use the calendar — more commoly referred to as the Mayan calendar — for more than decoration, in which case you'll have to turn the giant stone dials back and start all over again at Day One, Year One. However, for the small minority of doomsday alarmists among you, today is the last day of the world as we know it. Hope you didn’t have big plans for the weekend!
In the spirit of our (possibly) imminent destruction, help us choose the best movies about the end of the world and the terrifying new world that continues on after the apocalypse.
Rate the Top 10 Best Apocalyptic Movies >>
Posted 12.21.12 by BrentJS
2013 is going to bring several disaster and apocalyptic movies to the big screen — that is, if the planet survives the conservative estimates of the Mayan calendar. Should time continue beyond December, audiences will be treated to the futuristic apocalyptic landscapes of Oblivion, Ender's Game and After Earth; Brad Pitt fighting zombies in World War Z while, in another zombie apocalypse, a zombie falls in love with a human in Warm Bodies. Then there's humanity piloting giant robots to fight off giant monsters in Pacific Rim and the straight-up earthquake survival movie Aftershock.
With the Mayans' projected doomsday of Dec. 21 looming in the near future, Hollywood Dailies takes a look back at some classic disaster movies from years past. watch some disaster movie trailers >> Posted 08.28.12 by reelz
Yesterday the release date for The Lone Ranger was announced: December 21, 2012, a date that happens to coincide with the winter solstice (the earth's equator aligning with the Milky Way) and the end of the Mayan 5,139-year Long Count calendar.
The Mayan calendar has not only been informational to archaeologists, it has also been a design inspiration for wall clocks, jewelry, and even paper basket-liners at some restaurants. Many people believe that this calendar is even more significant, saying that it predicts the day the world will end, with some thinking that the Mayans had insider information about an alien attack (they did know about astronauts after all), and others believing that it will be apocalypse by seismic and meteorological events or a mysterious planet on the outer-reaches of the solar system flinging itself at the earth.
Apparently Jerry Bruckheimer and the folks at Disney don't think the apocalypse is going to happen December 21, 2012, because if they did, it's a pretty safe assumption that they would release the movie a week or two earlier. Maybe December 21, 2012 is just another day, and if they Mayan civilization were still around, they'd have another calendar up and ready to go by that time. Or maybe Johnny Depp and Armie Hammer are two of the horsemen of the apocalypse. What do you think? Posted 06.09.11 by Mandy
|Title ||Weekend ||Total ||Analysis |
|2012 ||$65.0M ||$65.0M ||Roland Emmerich disaster pic has the largest opening weekend since Harry Potter in mid-July. |
|A Christmas Carol ||$22.3M ||$63.3M ||Tiny Week 2 dropoff bodes well for this remake as holiday season approaches. |
|The Men Who Stare at Goats ||$6.2M ||$23.4M ||Offbeat Clooney comedy has nearly made its modest $25M budget. |
|Precious ||$6.1M ||$8.9M ||Novel adaptation does a remarkable $35K/screen as it slowly expands nationwide. |
|Michael Jackson's This Is It ||$5.1M ||$68.2M ||Jackson rehearsal concert pic still in Top 5 in third week. |
Posted 11.15.09 by reelz
Woody Harrelson already scored a hit this year with Zombieland, but this weekend sees two more Harrelson movies open: 2012 and The Messenger. In 2012, Harrelson plays the conspiracy theorist and pirate radio host Charlie Frost, who is closer to Harrelson's own personality — a well-known environmental activist and a hemp-loving pacifist — than the role of Armycasualty-notification officer Capt. Tony Stone in writer-director Oren Moverman 's The Messenger. Harrelson told THR that playing a soldier changed his view on them entirely.
The one thing that my whole ideology lacked was the compassion for the soldier, and now that's been taken care of. I have a great deal of respect for these people who go over there and risk their lives every day for very little money just because of the love for their country, so I've come to really revere the soldier. I feel like the movie is really a journey you take with your heart, and my part of that journey began with going to Walter Reed [Army Medical Center]. It accessed places in my heart I wasn't necessarily expecting to access. It was important for me, because I'm definitively anti-war, pro-peace. I do think that supporting the troops is a lot bigger question than supporting the war.
The Messenger certainly puts Harrelson in more human peril than 2012, where he greatest enemy is a "giant chunk of magma," but Harrelson told Salon that despite how different the two movies are, his process for choosing projects was the same in both cases.
You know, I don't feel like a movie has to have a message, necessarily. If a movie's fun and funny and just great entertainment, that's enough.
"Fun and funny" seems to describe Harrelson's other upcoming movie, Defendor, which is yet to be given a release date by Sony.
It's a guy who's mildly retarded who thinks he's a superhero, only, of course, bullets don't bounce off and he gets beat up all the time. He's trying to fight crime and falls in love with the girl, played wonderfully by Kat Dennings, who's a crack whore. Peter Stebbings wrote and directed it; he's an actor. I was surprised how good it turned out, and luckily Sony thought so, too, because they picked it up (in Toronto).
Defendor might seem like an unusual choice for a different actor, but with Harrelson's varied resume, including soldiers, serial killers, conspiracy theorists, and pornography tycoons, playing a "mildly retarded superhero" isn't even a surprise. Posted 11.13.09 by Ryan
Advance buzz for director Roland Emmerich's 2012 has not been very good, but it seems that if you don't take his third blow-up-the-world pic too seriously, it isn't bad.
"This is fun. 2012 delivers what it promises, and since no sentient being will buy a ticket expecting anything else, it will be, for its audiences, one of the most satisfactory films of the year."
— Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"...God forgive me, but I enjoyed the nerve-racking silliness of this newest, loudest exercise in destruction."
— Lisa Schwarzbaum, Entertainment Weekly
"If you rolled every disaster movie into one spectacular package, you would wind up with something close to 2012, Roland Emmerich's latest apocalyptic fantasy."
— Stephen Farber, Hollywood Reporter
"On any level other than as sheer visual sensation, 2012 is a joke, for the simple reason that it has no point of view; the film offers no philosophical, metaphysical, intellectual and certainly no religious perspective on the cataclysm, just the physical frenzy of it all."
— Todd McCarthy, Variety
"It goes without saying that people do not watch Godzilla movies for their human protagonists' exhibition of bravery in the face of certain peril but rather to enjoy said peril. They also don't go to disaster movies asking to be browbeaten by a hack director with an obscene amount of money and an incredible special-effects crew."
— Simon Abrams, Slant Magazine Posted 11.12.09 by reelz
From the trailers and sneak peeks we have seen so far, it sure does look like everything goes in 2012. Buildings collapse, tidal waves wash over the mountains, the earth cracks open, and fire rains down from the skies. The most famous monuments around the world are spectacularly destroyed, and religious icons in particular seem to take it on the chin.
Not a fan of organized religion, director Roland Emmerich rips apart sacred sites with gleeful abandon. The Vatican gets it, from the crack running right down the center of the celling of the Sistine chapel to St. Peter's Basilica rolling over and crushing worshipers. The iconic statue Christ the Reedemer in Rio de Janeiro crumbles, and a Buddhist temple high in the mountains is reclaimed by the sea. He stops short at Islamic monuments, though.
Originally, he confesses, he wanted to to destroy one of Islam's holiest sites as well: the Kaaba, a cube-shaped building in Mecca that is the focus of of the Islamic pilgrimage called the Hajj. But, he explains to Sci-Fi Wire, cooler heads ultimately prevailed:
Well, I wanted to do that, I have to admit. But my co-writer Harald said, "I will not have a fatwa on my head because of a movie." And he was right. ... We have to all ... in the Western world ... think about this. You can actually ... let ... Christian symbols fall apart, but if you would do this with [an] Arab symbol, you would have ... a fatwa, and that sounds a little bit like what the state of this world is. So it's just something which I kind of didn't [think] was [an] important element, anyway, in the film, so I kind of left it out. Posted 11.03.09 by reelz
Will the world end in fire or in ice? And when it does, will the lowly cockroach inherit the earth? The end of days is one thing that Hollywood knows how to do really well — at least sometimes.
With the apocalyptically themed 2012 in theaters next week, we thought it high time to take stock of the many tried-and-true horsemen of the apocalypse in The 10 Most-Killer Ways to End the Earth. It's against these titles that 2012's wrath shall be measured. Posted 11.02.09 by reelz
As Roland Emmerich prepares to end the world in a cascade of disasters for 2012, some true believers are complaining that he's putting too negative a spin on what could be key date in human evolution.
According to Everything Long Beach, twenty-eight cities around the globe are hosting "counter-screenings" to explore the positive transformations that might be expected when the Mayan calendar runs out of days on December 21, 2012. The unlikely title of these conferences is a nod to Dr. Strangelove — 2012: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Dimensional Shift.
Not that moviemakers mind, of course. Not only was this sort of speculation about 2012 a source of inspiration for the movie, the studio is even funding junkets for one of its chief prophets. New York Magazine reports that, as part of its attempts to heighten the buzz around the movie, the studio is providing financial backing for a conference of 2012-ologists at Yellowstone (which the movie destroys) even though attendees are for the most part describing the upcoming movie as "counter-productive."
Headlining the conference is 2012 guru and psychedelic drug advocate Daniel Pinchbeck, who is described as "equal parts Jesuit and Jim Morrison." The inspiration perhaps for the movie 2012's own Charlie Frost (Woody Harrelson), who continues to deliver his doom-laden guerilla broadcasts from the borderlands between fact and fiction at thisistheend.com. Posted 11.02.09 by reelz
It appears the producers can't quite commit to what they have done with 2012. All the major public promotions and sneak peeks have featured a cascade of overlapping and over-the-top disasters bordering on apocalypse porn. A wild ride for sure, but not too heavy on the characters and the plot.
Nonetheless, it's not just about the CGI, insists 2012 co-writer/co-producer/composer Harald Kloser, in an interview with Film Journal:
The disaster is primarily the background for strong emotional stories of regular people. You know, we have John Cusack, Oliver Platt, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Danny Glover — actors with higher standards than "Run! Go! Watch out! Duck." All those brilliant actors have accepted to be in our movie because the characters in the story were appealing to them. At least, that's what they told me!
...People see explosions and buildings collapsing and earthquakes, but that's only the stage, the canvas for very intimate and very private stories and very deep characters, which is what [director Roland Emmerich] and I — I can speak for him here — are most proud of.
Hmm. Maybe so, but not much evidence of that appears in the footage released so far. Strip away the doom-laden canvas — as someone did in an unofficial "actor's version" of an extended clip from the movie — and the humanistic aspects of the movie start looking more than a little thin.
In any case, there is no hesitation in the three TV spots for the movie that have just started making the rounds. It all disaster, all the time, remixed for your viewing pleasure. And for those of you who prefer your apocalypse set to music, Sony has released a video of a pop song by Adam Lambert that is featured in the movie. Buildings collapse, meteors strike, but he bravely sings on. Posted 10.27.09 by reelz