Sunday, January 9, 2022

Don't Look Up!

Kate Dibiasky (Jennifer Lawrence), an astronomy grad student, and her professor Dr. Randall Mindy (Leonardo DiCaprio) make an astounding discovery of a comet orbiting within the solar system. The problem: it's on a direct collision course with Earth. The other problem? No one really seems to care. Turns out warning mankind about a planet-killer the size of Mount Everest is an inconvenient fact to navigate. With the help of Dr. Oglethorpe (Rob Morgan), Kate and Randall embark on a media tour that takes them from the office of an indifferent President Orlean (Meryl Streep) and her sycophantic son and Chief of Staff, Jason (Jonah Hill), to the airwaves of The Daily Rip, an upbeat morning show hosted by Brie (Cate Blanchett) and Jack (Tyler Perry). With only six months until the comet makes impact, managing the 24-hour news cycle and gaining the attention of the social media obsessed public before it's too late proves shockingly comical -- what will it take to get the world to just look up?!


From this premise a pretty interesting if not subtle satire about the end of the world is told. I got most of the references that are being satirized because the humor and situations are as broad as you can the point of being bashed over the head with the point. And that point is that we can't save ourselves and maybe at this point in our civilization do we even want to save ourselves. We have gone too far when a planet killing comet doesn't bring us together but keeps us from uniting to find a solution to the actual death of the planet that they know the exact day of also.

I enjoyed all the actors who were very game. Leo is at his most shlubby in ways than I have never seen him and I can only stare in awe at the bangs of Jennifer Lawrence and love that snarky attitude I have seen her deliver whenever she is on the TV talk shows. The rest of the stunt casting can be distracting at times but they are all very broadly drawn, especially Meryl Streep as the clueless President.

The crisis here evolves is a credible way that is not even satire at this point. The anti-comet people act much like today's anti-vaxxers. Where is the joke? I am only more terrified than I have ever been about our chances to save ourselves from ourselves. There is only the fine line between satire and documentary or historical re-enactment in this one and that removes some of the sting.

But I liked it and appreciated it's point of view.


Monc said...

My wife recommended this movie to a friend.

Wife: Did you like it?

Friend: I did, but it took me a while to realize it was supposed to be a comedy. Felt too real.

Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

That is the exact way to look at it actually.