Dwayne Johnson flexes his dramatic muscle to lead familiar-yet-palatable Skyscraper
WATCH THE TRAILER(S) HERE:
KEY CAST MEMBERS: Dwayne Johnson, Neve Campbell, Chin Han, Roland Møller, Noah Cottrell, Bryon Mann, McKenna Roberts, Hannah Quinlivan, Elfina Luk, Noah Taylor, Adrian Holmes and Pablo Schreiber
DIRECTOR(S): Rawson Marshall Thurber
What is the Pearl? It’s the new commercial/residential structure in Hong Kong designed by billionaire Zaho Long Ji (Chin Han), who now wants Will to make sure that everything in his buildingis up to snuff before the residential half opens up (from the 96th floor on up). But what Will doesn’t know is that why he, Sarah and their two kids Georgia (McKenna Roberts) and Henry (Noah Cottrell) are enjoying their stay, there are some nefarious forces plotting a much different visit to the Pearl. That would be the ruthless assassin Xia (Hannah Quinlivan) and the mercenary Botha (Roland Møller), who are after something that Will has no knowledge of nor why.
But he and his family are about to – if they can survive the certain to be fatal scenario awaiting them in the world’s tallest skyscraper.
SO IS IT GOOD, BAD OR JUST AWFUL? An action movie that tries to balance its more (seemingly) outrageous moments with committed performances and intriguing camera work before tying together just how you’d expect (if you pay attention to all the foreshadowing), Skyscraper is an entertaining, family-involved-yet-extremely-violent at times diet Die Hard that while not original, it’s satisfying enough to keep you interested. And if that sentence seems like a mouthful, it should.
Because that’s what happens when you are catering to at least three different types of audiences at once.Johnson, as he has proven in a variety of his roles, commands attention as Will Sawyer, a man who is not invincible yet at the same time extremely determined to do what he needs to do to save the people he loves. His limited stunts seem ridiculous yet, given his commitment and approach, plausible – which, for action movies, has long been an issue for many people paying attention (skip ahead to 1:54 in that link; language NSFW!). Likewise, neither Campbell nor young co-stars Roberts or Cottrell seem to act in an over-the-top fashion, their actions instead seeming reasonable, logical and again, (somewhat) sensible given the situation in which they find themselves.Writer/director Rawson Marshall Thurber (Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story, We’re the Millers) has a history of producing surprising hits, most of which are exclusively comedies. With Skyscraper, he proves he has potential to deliver an action film that, while it does not do anything to reinvent the genre, doesn’t have to be dumb, either. While it lacks a distinct quality to make it stand out from the pack – Johnson’s prosthetic leg accessory comes into play quite often, but it doesn’t always feel as handi-capable as intended – the interplay between the characters works more than it does not, the film moves along swiftly and, again, the story plays out with a good mix of brain and bravado … As best you can in this type of film. Sure, the film could have likely reached a more classic status with a full “R” rating or a
Or at least it does it enough to keep you from wanting to burn down the theater the way the Pearl does on the screen.