It was a simple case of mistaken identity. There I was, cozy in a comfy chair, blanky pulled up to my nose, the flashy-box primed to play what I thought was going to be a ridiculous action flick. In other words, I was psyched for some good old fashioned so-bad-it’s-good, throw-down on the small screen extravagance.
Little did I know.
Ok, the movie in question was 2012. As in, it’s the end of the world, courtesy the Mayan calendar, starring John Cusack and Amanda Peet. I have zero expectations regarding plot or delivery and basically just want to see some cool special effects. And with that, I hit ‘play’…
Uh… hmm… gosh, this acting seems a little extra bad, but that’s ok. Any minute now John Cusack will show up and… woah, the scientific premise here is that a black hole is slowing the Earth’s rotation? Um, fine, I guess… ahhhhh…. Now I’m supposed to swallow that an archeologist just found a crucifix in an ancient Mayan ruin? I wonder when John Cusack’s gonna show… oh, COME ON, this is like the fourth conversation in a row about God… I know it’s the apocalypse, but let’s get a move on here people! Heheh… really? The president just seamlessly evacuated the west coast?! And I really have to swallow that the ancient Mayans prophesied a great Christian event in Chichen Itza?! And seriously, where is John Freaking Cusack?!!!
Sunday School Musical Two competing groups of high school students must rally together and enter a song and dance competition in order to save their church from closing.
Evil Based on the classic legend of a cynical journalist who discovers that the power of faith can defeat the forces of unspeakable darkness.
Countdown: Jerusalem A journalist searches for her daughter as a series of catastrophic disasters push a destabilized society toward the brink of global war.
Yup, I got Punk’d by the religious right. My experience might not hold a torch to such degrading and filthy R-R swap-outs as masquerading pro-life centers as abortion clinics, but all the same, it is tricksy. There’s just one catch though. One little detail that I can’t seem to jiggle out of my brain. Follow my thought process: Take a popular film, slightly alter the title (no pun intended,) cast with terrible actors and… yeah. I’m thinking CineVangelists are taking their cues from the porn industry.
Alright, that’s a stretch, but I’ve got to wonder if they could possibly pull in porn-worthy revenue with their movie making/title-jacking ways. I don’t know much about it. We all know The Passion of the Christ killed at the box office, but was that a fluke? A quick online search revealed the 2006 emergence of Fox Faith, a division of Twentieth Century Fox. That seems sort of mainstreamish, since they do have a release agreement with AMC Theaters, but I don’t know how much success they are enjoying. According to Wikipedia, the New York times reviewed one of their films with the statement, “While it’s always fun when Hollywood aims to instruct us in the spiritual pitfalls of filthy lucre, perhaps insulting the artistic sensibilities of Christian audiences isn’t the best way to get them into the multiplex.”
But back to 2012: Doomsday, I believe the viewing experience can be summed up by these IMDB discussion board topics on the film: “How long did you manage to watch it?” (couldn’t help myself – slugged it out till the bitter end,) “Am I going to hell for laughing?” (No,) “This is not even Christian!” (A very good point,) “Where did the lady’s Mom go?” (hahahahahah… ah, you’ve got to see it to appreciate how funny that question is,) and “I’m the only one who liked the movie?” (Yeah, dude. You are.)