The Day After Tomorrow (2004)
January 7, 2018 11:15 AM - Subscribe

Jack Hall, paleoclimatologist, must make a daring trek from Washington, D.C. to New York City, to reach his son, trapped in the cross-hairs of a sudden international storm which plunges the planet into a new Ice Age.
posted by phunniemee (39 comments total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
You might think it'd be hard to choose, what with all the terrific plot and story elements, but my favorite part of this movie continues to be Gratuitous Wolf Ship.
posted by phunniemee at 11:18 AM on January 7 [13 favorites]

I love disaster movies, and its not a genre with a high volume output generally, so we take what we can get.

this movie provides lotsa fan service with over-the-top disaster scenarios, bad pseudo-science, improbable survival and rescue stories etc.,

but yeah, Gratuitous Wolf Ship might be its finest moment!
posted by supermedusa at 11:20 AM on January 7

also damn fine band name
posted by supermedusa at 11:20 AM on January 7 [2 favorites]

This is the one where the kids start out trapped in a train station or something? Saw it on a plane once. I watched most of it.
posted by rhizome at 11:26 AM on January 7

I liked the part where the kids successfully ran away from the Cold Monster.

Also I liked the CGI wolves where they'd somehow managed to find an animation team who had never in their entire lives seen a dog, or seen film of dogs, or seen a photo of a dog, but at least the filmmakers did vaguely describe dogs to the animation crew but apparently as a kind of smallish pony.
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 12:25 PM on January 7 [12 favorites]

So wolf. Such cheese. Much disaster. Wow.
posted by rmd1023 at 2:13 PM on January 7 [3 favorites]

Stupid stupid move, totally unrealistic and lame EXCEPT WE'RE LIVING IT RIGHT NOW. brrrrrr, glad it'll be up to freezing tomorrow.
posted by sammyo at 2:38 PM on January 7 [2 favorites]

I saw the last half on tv a long time ago so I don't remember much, did the kids outrun something outrunnable? into the library? It was the book burning that disturbed me. I don't thing burning paper provides all that much heat and nobody seemed to be scanning the titles for rare first editions to save out.
posted by TWinbrook8 at 3:58 PM on January 7 [1 favorite]

Fave parts:

- Helicopter freezes mid-air, crashes
- Outpost scientists (rightly) finish that good Scotch they've been saving, knowing they are well and truly fucked
- Teenagers burn the first Bible ever printed on any printing press (side note: no fucking way this wouldn't be under lock and key/inaccessible, and does anyone actually know if this is in the NYC library? I doubt it but am glad to be wrong, if so)
- Emmy Rossum cuts herself badly trying to save an immigrant family that doesn't speak English, only French, gets horrific infection within 24 hours

I could watch this daily in the gym if allowed. But, they'd have to turn the sound on to make it worthwhile.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 4:01 PM on January 7 [4 favorites]

TWinbrook8, the kids/homeless guy with dog/police officer DO outrun something outrunnable, an apparent drastic drop in temperature so severe that later on, Dennis Quaid is able to walk past people frozen solid and shatter them like glass with a light sneeze.

Note: that example didn't actually happen in the movie, it's made clear by other means that anyone caught out during the cataclysmic temperature drop the NYC group escaped by sheltering in the library will die instantly. However. Once the "eye" of the snowstorm that's big enough to cover most of North America moves on, somehow, it's not as cold?

Obviously you'd need to suspend your disbelief in a major way to enjoy this flick, but I always catch a few minutes of it whenever it's on. Guilty pleasure, y'know?

If you want to truly see the worst disaster movie made recently that tries to be "smart," check out Oceans Rising by, you guessed it, The Asylum. It's mostly unwatchable, but the dialogue is extremely lol-worthy.

For those wishing to watch somewhat realistic disaster flicks that are currently available on Netflix, check out The Wave or Pandora.
posted by Unicorn on the cob at 4:12 PM on January 7 [1 favorite]

Gotta love the cynical knockoffs of Bush and especially Cheney.
posted by ZeusHumms at 5:00 PM on January 7

- Outpost scientists (rightly) finish that good Scotch they've been saving, knowing they are well and truly fucked

Ian Holm, everybody.
posted by ZeusHumms at 5:02 PM on January 7 [1 favorite]

I don't know, watching the Atlantic Ocean surge on up major roads in Boston on Thursday, I was keeping an eye out for our own gratuitous wolf ship. I love this movie!
posted by ChuraChura at 5:21 PM on January 7 [1 favorite]

Gotta love the cynical knockoffs of Bush and especially Cheney.

Aww, I liked it when Chick Deney saw the error of his ways and totally bought Mexico a goose for Christmas.
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 5:34 PM on January 7 [1 favorite]

nobody does schlock like emmerich; it scratches a certain itch on a lazy sunday afternoon while surfing mefi
posted by entropicamericana at 6:16 PM on January 7 [2 favorites]

Seconding The Wave. In Norwegian with English subtitles, currently on Netflix (?)
posted by TrishaU at 7:24 PM on January 7 [3 favorites]

Love this one so so much. Gratuitous weather porn for the win! And the burning of the Gutenberg bible always got me, too-you’ve been in the library for ten minutes and this is apparently the only book left to you?
posted by purenitrous at 7:50 PM on January 7 [1 favorite]

If I'm ever trapped in a library while the world freezes outside I reckon I will start with the six shelves of Lee Child novels rather than the one and only Gutenberg Bible.
posted by turbid dahlia at 8:56 PM on January 7 [5 favorites]

Hmm, I saw this one in the theatre and remember thinking, oh my god, this is the future thanks to climate change. This thought made it more genuinely terrifying to me than any ghost or monster story...
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 11:39 PM on January 7

Note: If you are catch this movie on TV and start watching and are wondering for the next 40 minutes "When it will get all snowy? Where the hell is Dennis Quaid? I mean, I hope everything works out for John Cusack, I didn't know he was in this, but they're kinda leaving Dennis Quaid's plot dangling... ooh! Thandie Newton! Maybe this is like a Towering Inferno/Airport big cast-type movie. Still, where's Dennie Quaid...?" you are actually watching 2012.
posted by Alvy Ampersand at 12:09 AM on January 8 [15 favorites]

I love dumb disaster movies. Like, The Core is legitimately one of my favorite popcorn flicks. But I just can't with this one. It just takes itself way too seriously to be fun.

Like, the people making this movie obviously thought they were making like a loosely fictionalised adaptation of An Inconvenient Truth, but oh boy did they miss that mark. If they were trying to Producers it and make a film that reduces the public's belief in climate change by making the very idea look as self-evidently ridiculous as possible, on the other hand, then mission accomplished.
posted by tobascodagama at 5:03 AM on January 8 [4 favorites]

I'm pretty sure this movie and especially the Wolf Ship directly inspired the video game The Long Dark, though.
posted by tobascodagama at 5:06 AM on January 8 [1 favorite]

I especially liked how, in a wood-panelled building with wooden shelves and furniture, the first thing they think to burn is the books.
posted by Fuchsoid at 6:44 AM on January 8 [11 favorites]

I haven't watched this movie in a while, but I thought that they didn't burn the Gutenberg Bible, but someone mentions 'a whole section on tax law' that they can use instead?
posted by sperose at 6:57 AM on January 8 [4 favorites]

No one burns the Gutenberg Bible.

There's some fighting over which books to burn. The Girl Who Isn't Emmy Rossum has a tug of war with Librarian Guy over one of Nietzsche's books. Librarian Guy is like hey you can't burn this Nietzsche's the most important thinker of the 19th century. And Not-Emmy Rossum is like oh come on he was a chauvinist pig and in love with his sister. And then the kid from Allen Strange is like hey there's a whole section on tax law down here.

And then later, in the scene right before WOLF SHIP, Librarian Guy is clutching super hard to a Gutenberg Bible and Not-Emmy Rossum is all you think god is gonna save you? And Librarian Guy sneers and says no, this is the first book ever printed, and if western civ is over I'm going out protecting this little piece of it.

I've seen this movie A LOT.
posted by phunniemee at 8:15 AM on January 8 [19 favorites]

If I'm ever trapped in a library while the world freezes outside I reckon I will start with the six shelves of Lee Child novels rather than the one and only Gutenberg Bible.

Dude! The hell did Lee Child ever do to you?

BTW, I interviewed Roland Emmerich about this movie back in the day when I wrote for a print genre media magazine. He was really serious about how real honest-to-god true life science this was. He actually bought the film rights to a "non-fiction" popular "science" "book".

Albeit one by Art Bell, who should require no introduction, and Whitley Strieber who may not require introduction either but is best known for writing The Hunger (which I have to say does compensate for a multitude of sins) and Communion, the supposedly true tale of his mucking about with alien entities.

And granted, the director of The Core also went to great pains to make sure I understood how pinpoint accurate the science in his movie was too.
posted by Naberius at 8:57 AM on January 8 [4 favorites]

I watched this one again a while back expecting hilarity and to lol heartily at its ridiculousness, but honestly, like five real life extreme weather disasters later, it ended up just being kind of depressing.
posted by yasaman at 9:43 AM on January 8

See, The Core gets a huge pass in my book mainly for the scene where Aaron Eckhart explains all the reasons why the plot of the movie is impossible and then The Tucc is like, "Yeah, but what if it wasn't?"
posted by tobascodagama at 9:44 AM on January 8 [3 favorites]

I start laughing whenever (like now!) I think back on characters running down the hallway chased by the cold, slamming doors to hold back the cold as it chases them, in order to finally frantically throw books onto a fire.

I honestly think there's great at least undergrad academic potential to hinge an entire paper on that scene as microcosm of Emmerich's entire body of work and film ethos.
posted by Drastic at 7:28 PM on January 8 [3 favorites]

I deeply hated independence day, but for some reason found this unexpectedly entertaining. It was in the height of my movie reviewing days, however, and by time I was on to my third or fourth movie of the day, my reactions were sometimes a little squiff. I found the ridiculousness much more enjoyable without as much gross American jingoism that I found smothered Independence Day.
posted by smoke at 2:30 AM on January 9

I think San Andreas has over-taken Day After Tomorrow for me, but that is my California native bias showing.

The part where the guy falls through the snowed-over glass roof of the mall to die is pretty epic, though not wolf-ship epic.

also, while browsing trivia (and a SHOCKINGLY long continuity error list) on imdb I came upon these two back-to-back entries, making this a totally cringe-worthy example of why this ironic icon should probably hit the #metoo scrapheap:

According to Roland Emmerich, Emmy Rossum gave Jake Gyllenhaal a deep French kiss during their first read together.

59 of 61 found this interesting | Share this

Emmy Rossum was only fifteen-years-old when she auditioned for the film.

82 of 87 found this interesting | Share this

posted by Exceptional_Hubris at 8:18 AM on January 9 [4 favorites]

I saw this in theaters and only vaguely remember the ship wolves, but I can still picture those goofs running down the hall ever-so-slightly ahead of the fast approaching FROST.
posted by graventy at 8:38 AM on January 9 [3 favorites]

I swear I remember reading that the running down the hallway to escape frost scene was originally going to be running to escape CGI wolves, but they'd run out of money to animate more wolves.

That or the intern who'd been doing the wolf animations got a better paying gig at Starbucks.
posted by Eddie Mars at 12:55 PM on January 9 [3 favorites]

That scene makes about a billion times more sense if they're running from wolves instead of, like, cold air.
posted by tobascodagama at 2:06 PM on January 9

Or a persistent, creeping sense of ennui, a "Weltschmerz" if one will, that seeps imperceptibly through the corridors and into the bones, nay into the very soul.
posted by Naberius at 6:24 PM on January 9 [4 favorites]

I gotta see this again. I am an unapologetic fan of Emmerich's singular apocalyptic skill set. This enthusiasm knows no critical bounds.
posted by DrAstroZoom at 11:19 AM on January 10

QFT. Last week, it snowed in the Sahara. The pictures look like something straight out of The Day After Tomorrow (or GeoStorm, take your pick).
posted by Bora Horza Gobuchul at 4:02 PM on January 12 [1 favorite]

Such cheese. Much disaster. Wow.

*shrugs* ... it had charm, could be worse... could be... Geostorm
posted by jkaczor at 9:37 AM on January 31 [1 favorite]

Yeah, this is one of the most astoundingly stupid movies ever conceived... And yet... I think about this shit All The Time.
posted by latkes at 10:47 PM on February 3

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