Skyscraper provides satisfying, explosive, 80s era action

Skyscraper, Universal Studios via EPK
Skyscraper, Universal Studios via EPK /

Skyscraper is a movie that makes no apologies for attempting to entertain fans of action. The result is an incredible thrill-ride reminiscent of 80s era action.

Not terribly innovative, Skyscraper focuses on mind-blowing action to hypnotize and captivate audiences. The nail-biting action lasts for nearly the entire film. Dwayne Johnson and Neve Campbell are both superb in their roles. Additionally, the special effects are outstanding, and well worth the budget majority they certainly cost.

For adrenaline purposes alone, Skyscraper is worth a viewing. This film will never be Citizen Kane, or win any awards for acting, but it does what it sets out to do. It entertains. Skyscraper is self aware, relishing in the unbelievability.

The setup

Picture, if you will, a futuristic Hong Kong environment. A Hong Kong brazillionaire decides to use his unlimited resources, unrelenting ego, and a paucity of creativity to create the tallest building on the planet that looks suspiciously like the 2019 Women’s World Cup logo. His vision is over three times the size of the Empire State Building, including a room that looks like the X-Men‘s Cerebro filled with a 21st century version of the Bruce Lee’s “Hall of Mirrors.” The Pearl has everything! Except, of course, adequate security and fire analysis for an insurance policy worth the GDP of Australia. Enter Will Sawyer (Dwayne Johnson), former FBI agent, and building inspector extraordinaire.

Given the

Nakatomi Plaza’s

Pearl’s prominence, it’s only natural European terrorists would want to exploit the security loopholes via the type of dastardly plan that obviously requires at least one disposable computer hacker and a random assortment of muscle. The conflict is set.

The positives

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Dwayne Johnson can do no wrong. He’s more of a demi-god in this movie than when he voiced Maui in Moana. Skyscraper could have been filmed on top a double-wide and he would have still been able to make a harrowing escape from 10 feet high look exciting. On the contrary, Johnson battles raging infernos throughout two-thirds of the film, and makes those crazy “Russians taking unsecured selfies on top of sky-rise buildings“-videos pale in comparison the rest of the time. There are literally a handful of hold your breath moments during the build up to the third act, as he races to save his wife Sarah (Campbell) and their two kids.

Having said that, some of the action sequences take a hefty second serving of disbelief. I’m talking going back multiple times and still grabbing pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving extras. In fact, some scenes are so ridiculously impossible that, in a positive way, Skyscraper actually lives up to the absolute nuclear waste left after the internet ripped the movie poster apart.

The internet is tearing Dwayne Johnson’s ‘Skyscraper’ poster apart, and it’s magical (27 Photos)

It works. No apologies or excuses for what it is. Skyscraper throws caution to the wind and emulates the great 80s and 90s action sequences. Like Die Hard. It’s an incontrovertible success.

The negatives

Somewhere in the borderline derivative plot there is a relatively pointless subplot about Will being framed for a catastrophe. It distracts at best. Honestly though, who cares? Because it’s really just a vehicle for Johnson to be awesome, save his family, and figure out how to prevent the inevitable urban disaster of a building that size collapsing.

Among the irony of elevated expectations and Deus ex Machina are plot holes and pointless shots of onlookers, gazing slack-jawed at Sawyer putting on the best ever parkour display at 1,000 ft. high. And, once again, it doesn’t matter, because it’s still such an astounding ride.

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Just shut your critical thinking skills off for the duration. Ignore the patently ludicrous. Sit back and enjoy Skyscraper. Furthermore, go ahead and make plans for the next time Will Sawyer gets in trouble. Skyscraper 2: Electric Boogaloo. Or maybe 2 Sky 2 Scraper. It doesn’t matter. Hopefully it’s at an airport on Christmas Eve while his wife circles in an airplane above. After all, mimicking Die Hard once worked so well the first time.

Skyscraper is currently climbing the box office charts, but is facing stiff competition.