Skyscraper (2018) - USA
Reviewed by Andrew Chan (Film Critics Circle of Australia
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson have taken on many disaster and monsters and the latest action blockbuster requires him to take on none other than the world tallest “Skyscraper”. This novelty idea forms the bulk of the interest and despite its ridiculous scenario play and plot line, it is a largely harmless popcorn entertainment that allows the audience to indulge in total suspension of belief and dumb found engagement. The Hong Kong setting is largely laughable given the fact the film seem to be filmed in Bangkok and Chinatown with Hong Kong skyscrapers as green screen backdrop. Understand the difficulty to film in Hong Kong, but it adds to the realistic factor.
The Rock headlines the film and muscles his way out of impossible scenarios one after another in the event of a huge fire, explosions, building jumping and unbelievable stunts to essentially save his young family. Chin Han plays the owner of the huge skyscraper and is given a run for its money in a juicy role that balance profits and humanity. Neve Campbell as The Rock’s wife is given a better than expected role as she kick her way out of danger. One can not stop wondering how much better this film may be if she was the one that saved the day instead of The Rock. That would really be genre bending. Australian Chinese actress and Jay Chou”s muse - Hannah Quinlivan is clearly bad ass and manages to chew the scenery in a supporting role.
All in all, Skyscrapers is not a bad film, but it’s grossly unintelligent and essentially a rehash of “Die Hard” on a tallest skyscraper. The Rock battling the odds can be fun to watch, but this one tries hard and ended up rather predictable and disconnect from the audience. Director Rawson Thurber ultimately fails to exceed genre expectations and in turn created a stale big budgeted disaster hero epic that could have been far more thrilling.
I rated it 6/10