Skyscraper movie director: Dwayne Johnson, Neve Campbell, Chin Han
Skyscraper movie cast: Rawson Marshall Thurber
Skyscraper movie rating: 1.5 stars
The star of Skyscraper, the world’s tallest building, “twice the size of Burj Khalifa”, may be all about Hong Kong bling. But make no mistake. America’s brightest — with Marine Corps, FBI, “3 tours of Afghanistan” credentials behind them — are about to put their stamp all over it.
And not even much needs to be at stake, for that hardcore American training to kick in. Just the Rock and his family, which has the former Marine Corps/FBI guy, and now a security assesser for high rises, climbing up scaffoldings, crawling up and down the said skyscraper’s walls, walking through fire, and even jumping into buildings from thin air (the latter trajectory already shredded by better physics and maths experts online).
Not that you should go into a summer blockbuster expecting adherence to any laws of science. But then Skyscraper clearly loves to showcase its mechanics, strewn about the 225-floor ambitious glass structure. You may follow only a bit of it, but when the owner, Zhao (played by well-known Chinese actor Chin), and Johnson’s Will walk onto a portion that literally has them standing in air with buildings at their feet down below, visible through glass, you can marvel at the audacity of it all.
Why then have no lives at stake in what could have been another Towering Inferno or Die Hard? Instead, in his first action film, director Thurber is more intent on showcasing Dwayne Johnson’s indisputable superhuman, but also much exposed, talents. He stages the entire drama on Will trying to save his wife and children, the only residents inside the building, while a ridiculous villainous sub-plot plays along the building’s many floors. The wife, played by Campbell, has some fight under her own belt, having been a Navy combat surgeon. But with the Rock for husband, there is only little that she needs to do. A seemingly endless supply of duct tape gets more to do, in a curious sub-plot of own.
This film actually didn’t need much more, villainous or otherwise, than the fire starting on its 96th floor – with all the other 224 floors to spread in. And you don’t need much science to get that right.