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“Oh what a disaster!” – Not these films
Welcome back to Five of the Best and this week we are looking at Disaster Movies!
Not to give anything away but I’m talking meteor showers, floods, fires, avalanches, meteor showers, boats sinking, earthquakes and erm… meteor showers!!
Talking of meteor showers our planet will be having one this week.
Fire streaks moving at speeds of up to 40 miles per second will light up the sky but this is also a gentle reminder of how fragile life on Earth and the life of Earth is! Tangent… Right… Enough of that! ON TO THE LIST!
Twister (De Bont, 1996)
I remember seeing this film when I was a kid at the cinema (7 years old to be precise!?) and being absolutely mesmerised but terrified by them “twisters” you see in the clip above.
This film was perfect for the cinema and its production budget was one of the biggest at the time.
Everything about this film screams Hollywood Blockbuster and it not only ticks the box of being an entertaining popcorn flick but also a thrilling disaster movie.
Now for a movie I didn’t see at the cinema as a kid..
Titanic (Cameron, 1997)
One thing I know about this film is that people love to hate it and perhaps for good reason but you can’t take away its whopping return at the box office which stands at well over two billion dollars. I like this film for its artistic vision and I think for James Cameron to make a movie in 1996/97 about a true tragedy from (fairly) recent history, must have required one hell of a vision and huge backing from the studio(s) involved.
It’s a haunting disaster movie that captures the tragedy of the events that occurred on that night as if we are actually witnessing the sinking of the “unsinkable ship”. Strange Sentence.
Deep Impact or Armageddon… Deep Impact or Armageddon…?
Armageddon (Bay, 1998)
In 1998 some clever people in Hollywood decided that it would be great to make two films with almost identical plots. I say clever because both films did extremely well at the box office. I say clever because had they, I dunno, maybe had a chat to see what film the others were making they would have realised the competition they were going to propel themselves into.
Interestingly enough Deep Impact was released a month before Armageddon but made approx. $200 million less.
For me, the proof is in the pudding because I believe Armageddon is the better all-round film (better story development, more action sequences, classic one-liners, and that belting anthem from Aerosmith).
Apollo 13 (Howard, 1995)
Houston, we have a problem! Apollo 13 is a disaster movie based on the true events of NASA’s failed mission to the moon in 1970. This film relies far more heavily on the performances of its actors than any of the previously mentioned movies.
The main character, Jim Lovell, is played by Tom Hanks who, during the 1990s seemed to turn any film he appeared in, into gold. Having received two oscars in the actor in a leading role category in the years prior to Apollo 13, Hanks had the unenviable task of making it a treble.
Rather like the Apollo 13 mission Hanks was unsuccessful but this disaster film itself was extremely well received by both the public and critics and has since become a modern classic.
Independence Day (Emmerich, 1996)
If The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air made Will Smith a television star then Independence Day made him a movie star overnight. This film is entirely fictitious and plays on the what if.. and who’s out there? notion thats basically makes up the alien sci-fi movie genre.
Will Smith has gone on to make a ton of those films and make a lot of money for himself and the studios but this is certainly one of his and Emmerich’s best.
Emmerich went on to make the successful The Day After Tomorrow and the poorly received 2012 movie, so he could be considered a disaster movie connoisseur but I think he got it right with Independence Day. It’s fun/entertaining and escapist viewing in its purest form.
That’s it for this week! Which choices do you agree with? Which choices don’t you agree with? As always feel free to comment and be sure to check out our other blogs!