Pompeii (2014) - 4 stars out of 10
I was actually surprised by this movie. I thought that it would be another disaster film with a loose (almost inconsequential) plot to tie together the lives of the victims, but the film actually focused on the characters and the historical accuracy of the city. The disaster was just the backdrop for this love story. Don’t get me wrong – this film has plenty of flaws. A lot of the dialogue was cheesy, the acting was just average (even with Kiefer Sutherland as the bad guy), the story could have been better, and the destruction sequence was actually a bit of a letdown. I don’t understand how, on an $80 million budget, the CGI during the film’s “main event” that everybody is waiting for could look like a video game instead of real life. Perhaps if the film was called “Gladiator: The Minor Leagues,” the audience would have been more focused on the gladiator sequences (which are probably the best that I have seen outside of “Gladiator”); instead, we spend most of the movie waiting for the love story to end and the volcanic destruction to begin. At least the film has the right ending. For a second, I was worried that we would see an unrealistic, ride-off-into-the-sunset ending, but they toyed with our minds and gave us the right one. The critics believe that this film was a bigger disaster than the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius and I wouldn’t recommend this film for its quality, but it’s worth watching to see the amazing recreation of Pompeii and the thrilling gladiator sequences.