Yes, I must confess that I took my kids to see this Big Fat Hollywood Wallet Grab. We were all (bar Richard the Impassive) wildly excited by the Quicktime trailers, showing monks hitting bells at the top of world while giant waves bear down on them, or even bigger ocean cruise ships toppling around and around in giant waves, or giant waves crumbling anything and everything in their path with little concern for life or limb. And those giant waves were really, err, giant. Call me really shallow, but I'm a sucker for a giant wave. It might be because I cut my teeth on wheezy cheesy great aunts of this genre: The Towering Inferno and The Poseidon Adventure. Cheesy action movies are in my blood. They made my imagination what it is today.
It might be that I am just a sucker for a giant wave, of course.
Luckily the kids are old enough not to find this sort of movie smacking of realism in any way shape or form. Nevertheless, Richard shook his head when I expressed an interest in taking the kids to see it, and would only say "FDPG'll have nightmares for years!"
So I did some research on our way into the theatre. When I presented our passes, I asked the Ticket Girl if she'd seen it. "Nope," she said, looking dubiously at the twins, "I haven't."
When we were getting our Kid Packs (oily popcorn, a Kinder Egg, and liquid sugar-in-a-cup, part of the Costco Theatre Pass) I asked the Snack Girl if she'd seen it. "Certainly not," she said, "I think those end of the world movies are SO manipulative. I don't think ANYONE should see them. It's scare-mongering." We both glanced at the twins, who were jiggling excitedly beside me. "Are you guys going to The Fantastic Mr Fox?" she asked them smilingly. "Um," I interrupted, shoving the kids along a bit, "come on, we're going to be late! Let's go!"
I thought about the results of my research during the Car Racing Through Yellowstone Fireballs scene, and glanced over at FDPG, who I had seated next to me, just in case, and whispered "Are you okay?" to her. "This is AWESOME!" she whispered back, "Just the kind of movie I LOVE."
Yeah, right, FDPG, I thought. Remember Disney's The Little Mermaid? You have yet to sit through that one. In fact, I gave up a year ago because you couldn't take the Witch (even though she has a KILLER song in that version). Heck, you even quake at that silly fake Banshee (as opposed to a Ban-hee) in Darby O'Gill & The Little People...why am I even telling you all this, Gentle Reader? Now you'll probably agree with Richard and think I am a terrible mother for taking FDPG to this film.
Anyhow, I gave up feeling like I was contributing to a Development of Eventual Nightmares For FDPG episode and concentrated on the film, which was, as the trailers promised, really exciting. Heart-pounding, in fact. It was so exciting and heart-pounding I worried a bit that I might have a heart attack. I felt slightly ill, even. Excited, but vaguely nauseous.
But not the kids. When the film had ended and we were leaving, they were all dizzy with delight. We passed a few kindly adults that said things like "Did you just see The Fantastic Mr Fox? Wasn't it lovely?" but I was too embarrassed to admit that no, we'd actually been in 2012, so I just smiled and mumbled something that no one understood, even the kids.
"What did you say to that lady," FDPG demanded. "Why didn't you just say that we were in THE BEST MOVIE OF THE YEAR?"
"Because," I muttered, "then they'd think I was an awful mother, taking you guys to violent end of the world films."
"Oh MUM!" they all said, clustering around me, hugging me hard, "you are the BEST mother for taking us to see that movie!"
It would have been rather poignant if the theatre manager hadn't passed us just then. "Did you guys just see The Fantastic Mr Fox?" he beamed. "NO!" the twins both said. "We just saw 2012! It's SO GOOD!"
"Oh," he said, blinking at me. "Uh, how - uh - fun." He had pretty much the same expression Richard'd had when we told him we might go see it. It look said "Gosh, you didn't really take those impressionable young children to see a violent end of the world movie what could you have been thinking don't you read reviews this movie is a bit over the top for such young minds oh my my my."
We smiled at each other; him sternly, me fatuously. Then I walked away, gripped by the devotedly adoring (and slightly oily) hands of the twins.
Anyhow, I meant to tell you about this cool picture we found when we got home. There are not only giant waves in this movie - there is a giant plane as well. I told Richard about it, who said "It's probably a Hercules." So we googled HERCULES but it was not the same plane. Even though I'd been mostly occupied with snitching bits of FDPG's popcorn and ogling the handsome Russian pilot flying the plane, I could vaguely remember something different about the wings. Then I had a brainwave (thanks to the wonders of Google). I typed in "What was the plane in the movie 2012?" And, along with the usual Wikipedia entry, the above picture came up. It's a comparison of the various types of Giant Planes. There is the Spruce Goose, the Airbus, a Boing 747, and the 2012 plane - the Antonov AN-225. It was all too cool. Giant waves, giant planes, giant action...
And nary a nightmare in sight.