The Fault NEAR our Stars

Check out this trailer for the upcoming Disaster flick San Andreas and then join me after the jump for some commentary:

Really I just wanted to get that title pun out there.  🙂

More seriously, this trailer actually has a good sense of pacing – it sets out to do one thing and does it well, and that makes for a great teaser.  Already I know exactly what I’m in for without the trailer expositing a melodramatic plot, which usually mars movies in this genre.  It shows me actors I like, crazy effects, and an epic scope which is sure to please audiences beyond the California border.

The one misstep is the obnoxious SSC musical score of “California Dreamin’ “.  Though I am thankful to them for proving the trend universally applicable, it adds that hint of pretentiousness to the film that you never want for a Disaster flick (cf – The Day After Tomorrow, 2014).  Some people in California are overly obsessed with an ever-looming “The Big One”, but most people know that the world will move on despite a catastrophic event on the Americans’ west coast.  Disaster flicks take on a bad taste which ruins their marketability when they forgo Michael Bay stupid fun  in favor of Michael Moore sermonizing.  The trick is to entertain us and scare us just a little, while making some observations about how some earth science works (in this case tectonic activity), and then leave it there.  We all remember the laughably idiotic Climate Change plotline in 2014which didn’t match up with the laughably idiotic Mayan Calendar apocalypse story they were supposed to be telling.

In brief, when you make a disaster film, make it about one of two things:  the human element of trying to take care of the ones you love (even Sharknado did that right)
let loose, make a fun little flick, and don’t tell the audience that their discarded popcorn tubs and candy wrappers are slowly destroying the planet.  We came for an Implausible Adventure, not an Inconvenient Truth.


About Tyler D. Welch

Filmmaker, Storyteller, Scholar View all posts by Tyler D. Welch

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