To my fan(s) out there, I apologize. This Rotten Week comes out every single Sunday without fail. Except when I go away for the weekend, forget my computer, have a lousy internet connection on a friend’s comp and leave for home seven hours later than expected. Then TRW hits the internet on Monday. Better late than never, though, as this week we’ve got female buddy cops and the White House going down (again).
Just remember, I'm not reviewing these movies, but rather predicting where they'll end up on the Tomatometer. Let's take a look at what This Rotten Week has to offer.
White House Down
Not since Day 7 of 24 has the White House spent this much time under so much duress. Between Gerard Butler bringing his particular brand of subpar acting into the President’s house in Olympus has Fallen (47%) and now a paramilitary group staging a coordinated attack against President Jamie Foxx, it’s been a bad year for Washington, D.C.’s landmark scene. Two movies coming out within four months of each other involving the White House being overrun with bad guys also points to the idea that we’re running out of terrorist situations for movie plots.
Helmed by popcorn flick and little else director Roland Emmerich (2012-39%, 10,000 B.C.-8%, The Day After Tomorrow-45%), White House Down follows Special Agent Channing Tatum hot off an interview with the Secret Service** that doesn't go so well. Unfortunately, things turn from bad to worse when a group of meanies take a run at the President. Seeing it as an opportunity to highlight skills his resume didn’t necessarily touch on, Tatum takes his shirt off and gets to work trying to protect both the president and his young daughter (Joey King).
**The whole premise of this flick is obviously ridiculous, but no part more so than how the Secret Service supposedly goes through the hiring process. They call an underqualified Tatum into the White House and give him what appears to be the same line of questioning one would receive at a local call center.
I don’t really see a clear path to critics liking this film. Emmerich’s resume does it no favors, and though Channing Tatum has had a real nice critical run as of late, the plot points here are too off the reservation for significant critical love. It’ll be cute at times, and the action sequences appear tight, but as an overall product it’ll finish below the halfway point. And anyone visiting the White House should keep their heads on a swivel. That place is a sitting duck. The Rotten Watch for White House Down is