Wednesday, April 7, 2021

Greenland (2020)

Streaming Services: Amazon Prime Video ($5.99)
Movie Name/Year: Greenland (2020)
Genre: Action, Drama, Thriller
Length: 119 minutes
Rating: PG-13
Production/Distribution: STX Films, Anton, Thunder Road Pictures, G-BASE, Riverstone Pictures, Film & TV House, GEM Entertainment, CatchPlay, Cinépolis Distribución, Diamond Films, Elevation Pictures, ErosSTX International, Golden Village Pictures, Impuls Pictures, Joyncontents Group, Kinomania, Metropolitan Filmexport, Pony Canyon, Roadshow Film Distributors (NZ) Ltd., Roadshow Films, STX International, Spentzos Films, Square Box Pictures, TGV Pictures, TOBIS Film, The Searchers, Top Film, Vertical Entertainment, Amazon Prime Video, Cinemundo, Encore Films, Eros Now, HBO Max, JL Vision Film, Leonine Distribution, TOBIS Home Entertainment, The Filmbridge
Director: Ric Roman Waugh
Writer: Chris Sparling
Actors: Gerard Butler, Morena Baccarin, Roger Dale Floyd, Scott Glenn, Randal Gonzalez, Scott Poythress, Claire Bronson, Madison Johnson, Gary Weeks, Tracey Bonner, Hope Davis, David Denman, Andrew Bachelor, Joshua Mikel, James Logan, Randall Archer
Blurb from IMDb: A family struggles for survival in the face of a cataclysmic natural disaster.

Selina’s Point of View:
I have been looking forward to Greenland for a long time. Maybe even since the start of the pandemic.
It was delayed several times before being released to streaming in the USA. Sometimes, that’s a bad sign. It could indicate reshoots or post-production issues. I think it’s pretty clear that, this time, it was delayed solely because of COVID.
Apocalypse movies are my thing. No matter what ends the world in those films, they always draw me.
These days, apocalypse movies hit different. They just pack a lot more of a punch since the coronavirus shut down our world. I imagine this is because if everyone was as absolutely moronic as the anti-maskers & anti-vaxxers are, it very well could have been an extinction-level disease.

That said, I was happy to see a film like this that focused on comets. Most of the apocalypse flicks I’ve seen have involved zombies, aliens, ice ages, or Earthbound natural disasters – with a scattering of religion. It’s nice to see something different. There’ve been a few comet/meteor/asteroid/thing crashing into Earth movies, but not a whole lot that I can recall. That means the majority of them probably weren’t all that memorable.
Greenland is.
It did sport some of my least favorite apocalypse tropes. Among them are: a couple starting on the rocks (we all know they’ll bond over the trauma and be back together in the end) and a child needing access to meds (you just know they’re going to lose, or be separated from, the meds at some point). I feel like, in this case, those tropes (and a couple of others) could have been subverted easily.

If they were, Greenland would have gotten a perfect score from me. Even with the small plot holes that picked at me by the conclusion.
The rest of the film was phenomenal. All the serious, emotional scenes, were so well done that I wound up ugly crying in the middle of the movie. That kind of reaction is normally ear-marked for the very end.
I have to give props to director Ric Roman Waugh (Felon, In the Shadows, Snitch) and writer Chris Sparling (Buried, ATM, The Warning). They created something special. It’s difficult to make an apocalyptic film feel fresh, but they did. I do believe their project was elevated by the work of Gerard Butler (The Vanishing, 300, Angel Has Fallen), Morena Baccarin (Deadpool, Gotham, Ode to Joy), and even the child star, Roger Dale Floyd (Doctor Sleep, Dr. Bird’s Advice for Sad Poets, Kronos). The various side-actors also felt perfect.

The ladies in charge of casting, Mary Vernieu (Euphoria, Promising Young Woman, Knives Out) and Michelle Wade Byrd (The Photograph, Bird Box, We Can Be Heroes), damn well earned their paychecks.
Greenland dug deep. It told a terrifying, gut-punch, of a story. One that will stand out – even to someone like me. I watch over 300 movies a year and I forget roughly 80% of them. I don’t believe this will be one of those.  
It’s only $5.99 to rent Greenland on Amazon Prime Video. I think it’s totally worth it.

Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – 78%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 64%
Metascore – 64/100
Metacritic User Score – 6.3/10
IMDB Score – 6.4/10
Trust the Dice: Selina’s Rating4/5
Movie Trailer:

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