The Core (2003)

Posted by Maria Mills | Posted on 12:43 PM | Posted in


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Movie Review written by: Born Movie Reviews
RT Critics Rating: 4.2/10

Born Movie Reviews' Rating: 5/10

THE CORE (2003) - Jon Amiel

The Earth's electromagnetic field has suddenly become unstable. People begin to randomly die. Lightning storms begin to grow. The weather begins to heat up. How does one explain these phenomena? The Earth has a deadline, and "the only way out is in."

The Core follows geologist Dr. Josh Keyes (Aaron Eckhart) as he learns that these strange occurrences are caused by a halt of the Earth's molten core rotation. If the planet's core remains ceased, the electromagnetic field will collapse within a year, literally "cooking" the Earth. The film follows Keyes and his fellow scientists as they develop a top-secret mission with the US government to drill into the Earth's core to set off a series of nuclear explosions to "jumpstart" the planet. Yes, it is exactly how it sounds.

For every disaster film, visual effects usually make up the flawed script. To my greatest surprise, not even that saved this movie. The visuals look horribly fake, similar to unrendered 3D models. There are so many ways to describe its ungodliness. The interior of the Earth looks like a video game simulation. The space ships look like something pulled off by Discovery Channel. The lightning bolts look like they were created by a college student on Adobe After Effects. Hell, if the whole film is looked at visual-wise, The Core just looks unfinished. You have a not-so-tasty cake with no decorations on it whatsoever to make it look better. The film's crust and mantle are bad enough. Wait until we drill deeper into the film's core.

As ridiculous as the script and story itself, the dialogue in The Core is unholy. It is as if it was written by high school students who took lessons in exaggerated drama theater. Even more scary is how a talented cast that includes Eckhart and even Hilary Swank is able to deliver those laughable lines while holding straight faces. Due to the film's horrendous writing, one just cannot take the film seriously anymore. Thus, for a disaster movie specifically, you lose the element of "panic," the vibe that reminds the audience that everyone is going to die.

After the huge layer of cheesiness, the crux of the film, where the stakes are raised even higher, that is when The Core becomes surprisingly interesting -- perhaps the most intriguing is the way the director interprets the inside of the Earth. Although the Earth's interior design is mediocre (maybe creative?), it is, without a doubt, scientifically inaccurate. Even a middle/high school student can point out the parts that lack sense. The movie is just sloppy, cheesy, and sometimes just plain stupid. From the Globe and Mall: "The only pressing burden in this deep interior world is the question - What in or on Earth is a cast this good doing in a movie this ridiculous?"

Nevertheless, it blows my mind on the fact that the crew of filmmakers was able to pull this off. The fact that The Core is barely digestible and there is a tacky mood throughout its narrative makes it be put on the shelf of "Bad movies." However, with visuals that look shockingly fake in a funny way and characters that somehow become tolerable halfway in, The Core is a bad movie that you have to see once. Step back, switch your brain off, and lose a few IQ points. It is worth the watch….. in a dumb way. Despite its purple script that cause demanding filmgoers to ask the film to stop, The Core keeps on going, like the very drill in its plot, like a never-ending roller coaster ride. In the end, it will somehow hold your attention. Maybe not your interest, but your attention.

In conclusion, The Core is definitely a bad movie, but it is one of those movies that is "so bad, it's good." To quote the Detroit NewsThe Core is "formulaic Hollywood swill done on such an epic scale of incompetency, it must be seen." The movie is aimed for audiences who seek something less emotional than Armageddon and something as ridiculously entertaining as Journey to the Center of the Earth or even 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea. But unquestionably, The Core is earth science in its worst case. In addition, it is a disaster movie in its worst case, probably the most scientifically inaccurate film of all time, as accurate as Frankenstein is for bringing dead bodies to life with electricity.


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