Deep Impact


Good visuals, same old story

Main Cast: Robert Duvall, Tea Leoni, Elijah Wood, Morgan Freeman
Director: Mimi Leder

Plot Summary: A large asteroid is heading for Earth — can it be stopped?

I realize my summary is a bit generic, but so is this movie’s plot. It’s been done before, and will certainly be done again. The disaster flicks, while enjoying their “heyday” in the 1970s, are still alive and well. The identical plot Armageddon is a variation on the theme, along with other recent flicks such as Volcano and the new Poseidon.

This movie focuses on a number of sub-plots. We have a young amateur astronomer (Wood), who originally spotted the dangerous rock from space, who wishes to join up with his girlfriend (Sobieski) and sets off on his own to do so. There is a young reporter (Leoni) who is estranged from her father, but family bonds prove stronger than anger in the end.

A space shuttle is sent up to intercept the rock and try to blow it to smithereens. Led by the old and wily astronaut (Duvall), the crew wrestles to get a bomb attached to the rolling asteroid. I don’t think I’m giving too much away in saying that something happens to their original plan, and they must come up with something else to save the world.

All these stories are interwoven among the disaster scenes. And these are good, no question about it. Technology has brought this genre up into the spectacular, and of course everyone is really waiting for when things explode and get washed away. And in that, this movie does deliver some pretty good visuals.

Overall, I can recommend this with reservations. It’s pretty clichéd and the characters aren’t well developed, but of course that isn’t critical in this genre. It delivers good action and competent acting.

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