Maybe they should just turn over the Oscar now. The final trailer for Warner Bros.’ upcoming disaster epic San Andreas is so jam-packed with jaw-dropping moments of the California cityscape collapsing in a maelstrom of death and destruction that it could easily serve as an awards reel for the army of visual effects artists involved. Outside of incredible shots like that giant wave riding toward the Golden Gate Bridge, though, it’s unclear whether there will be much of a story on display. Whether or not that matters is even more unclear.
Dwayne Johnson stars in the pic as a helicopter rescue pilot who must work together with his ex-wife (Carla Gugino) to save their daughter (Alexandra Daddario) after a massive earthquake decimates the West Coast. Archie Panjabi, Ioan Gruffudd, Will Yun Lee, Colton Haynes, Paul Giamatti and Kylie Minogue all also star.
Honestly, as gripping as San Andreas looks, I may be passing this one up. In the wake of Nepal’s humanitarian crisis, it just doesn’t feel right to watch movies like San Andreas for entertainment. People in that region had their lives upended, snuffed out or at least irrevocably impacted by that quake and the aftermath – many of the images depicted in San Andreas are terrifying, but there’s no escaping that the reason disaster movies are popular is because of the childlike enjoyment many of us get out of watching complete carnage envelop helpless humans on the biggest screen possible. And this summer, the oohs and aahs would just catch in my throat.
Still, I’m not everyone, and Warner Bros. is playing up the end-of-days element, even in the wake of Nepal, which suggests the studio doesn’t anticipate that many moviegoers to feel similarly jaded with Hollywood destructo-porn. We’ll see what happens when San Andreas roars into theaters in 3D on May 29.