Today: June 20, 2024

Cinema’s Most Spectacular Disaster Movies

With superhero movies dominating the box office recently it looked like the age of the disaster movie was well and truly over. Once the highlight of the cinema calendar, disaster films demonstrated not only the awesome potential power of nature – or other beings – but often made us marvel at our own insignificance.

With this year’s Godzilla, we saw the return of the disaster movie in spectacular style, with the infamous monster taking on two nuclear energy-guzzling creatures and (naturally) stomping major cities into dust in the process. To celebrate the release of Godzilla on digital download this week, join us as we take a look at some of recent cinema’s greatest disaster movies, from natural disasters to alien invasions, and the biggest lizard of all time …

Independence Day (1996)
When a gigantic spacecraft obliterates the world’s major cities in a bid to reap the Earth’s natural resources, a group of survivors band together to fight back. The highest-grossing film of the year Independence Day is today remembered for launching Will Smith’s movie career … and let’s not forget that White House-destroying money shot.

Twister (1996)
When two meteorologists (Helen Hunt & Bill Paxton) design a state-of-the-art tornado research device called DOROTHY, a race against time and the elements ensues to get it into the heart of the storm before a competitor launches a similar device. With terrifyingly realistic effects this notoriously gruelling shoot left the lead actors temporarily blinded and concussed! Twister is truly a rollercoaster of a film.

The Day After Tomorrow (2004)
A cautionary example of the possible effects of global warming, the film sees a paleoclimatologist (Dennis Quaid) called in to help when his once ridiculed predictions start to come true. With tennis ball-sized hailstones, 10km high tsunamis and multiple tornados, The Day After Tomorrow needs to be seen on the biggest screen possible as extreme weathers use the world’s landmarks as playthings.

War Of The Worlds (2005)
This loose adaptation of the infamous H. G. Wells’ novel sees a dad (Tom Cruise) fight for survival and protect his children when an alien race emerges on Earth. Directing a story where the ‘tripods’ wait until earth had over-populated before striking in order to harvest human blood, meant that Steven Spielberg could finally make an “alien picture where there is no love and no attempt at communication.”

2012 (2009)
When a geophysical research team discovers that the Earth’s core is heating up and becoming unstable, world leaders begin making preparations to save the human race. Meanwhile, a writer (John Cusack) stumbles on the same information and struggles to find a way to save his family while volcanic eruptions and earthquakes of unprecedented strength wreak havoc around the world.

Godzilla (2014)
Being directed by a self-confessed fan meant that Godzilla was always going to honour the monster movie behemoth, but the film also served to remind fans why disaster films are such fun to watch. We can only watch in awe.

Godzilla is out on digital download now and on DVD and Blu-ray on 27th October.




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