Big Budget Blockbuster by German Sci - Fi Specialist Roland Emmerich
Roland Emmerich has a knack for making good looking Science Fiction movies on a shoestring. Never mind the sometimes cringeworthy script (Universal Soldier, Independence Day), his pictures always sparkle and shine and give the viewer plenty of eye candy. He also seems to have a significant problem with New York City, as this is his third movie in which he destroys the place (after already receiving a whooping in Godzilla and Independence Day).
"The day after tomorrow", produced by his wife's Centropolis production company, takes a serious scientific issue and turns it into mass entertainment: After years of global warming an obscurely named oceanic current, pumping warm water around the northern hemisphere (obviously modelled on the gulf stream) one days stops due to desalination via the melting arctic icecaps and the world faces a climatic catastrophy: 3 humungous superblizzards suck supercool air from the stratosphere onto the earth and turn the northern hemisphere into one big icy tundra.
Within a week. Well, yes.
If you forget about the crappy science and the horrible dialogues by the bored actors (Dennis Quaid as a paleoclimatologist, Jake Gyllenhaal as his son locked in an icy New York Public Library and Emmy Rossum as the teenage love interest) the movie works quite well: turning the US (and especially New York) into an icy nightmare full of wolves and stranded ships gives us a taste of the power of natural disasters and has been done with considerable computerpower. The special effects work beautifully and as usual Emmerich manages to make this film look more expensive than it is. Unfortunately he can't conceal the considerable plotholes and the abysmal acting, but you will probably expect that anyway from the man who gave you Bill Pullman holding the most embarassing ultrapatriotic speech on a pick-up in Independece Day.
So, go hither and watch millions of Americans trying to make it over the Rio Grande into Mexico just to be sent back as illegal immigrants, but leave your brain at the door.
Lennon points out that the film is based on the book "The Coming Global Superstorm" by Art Bell and Whitley Strieber.
DejaMorgana says Hey there. A somewhat minor point regarding The Day After Tomorrow : while the movie does trivialize and distort real science, the basic mechanics of the premise are not as imaginary as you think: the current that stops working in the movie is not "based on the Gulf Stream", it's based on the Great Ocean Conveyer Belt, a supersystem of all the major ocean currents that circulate warm water around the world. Most of our climate patterns are shaped, at least partly, by this conveyor system, of which
the Gulf Stream is only a minor part, and a lot of people believe that the conveyor belt could be shut down by desalination just like it does in the movie. Supposedly the resulting climate change would take years or decades, instead of days - but it would
happen, theoretically at least. It's been a while since i read up on this subject, but you might want to search the Web for North Atlantic Oscillation as a starting point if you want more information.