I saw the movie 2012 over the weekend and was mildly disappointed by it. The effects were good and it had some intense moments, but overall, I wasn't impressed. I think I may have set my expectations too high. It's already a topic of interest to me, and Roland Emmerich also made one of my favorite movies ever, Stargate. In addition to that, I had low expectations for Emmerich's movie 10,000 BC, but I was actually quite impressed with it after seeing it.
I think I was expecting a more profound message from 2012. I thought the ending was rather disappointing. Essentially, you have (spoiler warning!) a bunch of elitists snobs building arks to save themselves. They could care less about saving anyone besides themselves. They even kept the whole project a secret. Even towards the end when they let the other people waiting get on, the people waiting were still people that had originally paid to get on! The only non-elitists to make it was John Cusack's group of people who snuck on board. I thought it was a crappy ending to have the most selfish people in the world be the survivors of the disaster. And to think, they would be the people to start civilization all over again. What a disaster that would be. They'd all probably be at each others throats trying to decide who got what. And would actually do the labor involved in building a new civilization? The whole idea of an end of the world scenario is coupled with the idea of a new beginning. There's not much point in having an end of the world scenario if things are just going to go back to being how they were before.
Another thing I didn't think seemed right was how quickly the earth recovered from the disasters. If what I've heard scientists say is true about the so-called 'super volcano' known as Yellowstone National Park, then an eruption would not only cause massive destruction to North America, but the ash cloud could be in the air for years. This would result in something like a nuclear winter which would cause plant life to die and, as a result, animal and human life would begin to die off too. It's possible people could still survive it, but there wouldn't be many. So the idea that everything was fine after 27 days seemed to be a bit of a stretch to me.
One other thing I thought about was that the disasters may also cause the world's nuclear arsenal to detonate, magnifying the disasters that much more. That would cause a nuclear winter even if the eruption of Yellowstone didn't. It would create a situation quite unpleasant for any surviving humans.
I guess Emmerich was trying to go for a somewhat happy ending, but I think he fell short on this one.