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HindustanTimes Thu,27 Nov 2014

Critics' review: White House Down is a cheap copy of Die Hard

Hindustantimes.com  New Delhi, July 19, 2013
First Published: 16:39 IST(19/7/2013) | Last Updated: 17:23 IST(19/7/2013)

Roland Emmerich's White House Down is definitely way down on the must watch movie list for critics, or perhaps not at all. The film reeks of Die Hard it seems, except for Channing Tatum of course.

But as occupational hazards go, one may not always encounter delightful cinema, and critics seems to have really not liked this one for that very reason.

As Chris Nashawaty writes in EW.com, "The entire film is merely an excuse for (Channing) Tatum to squeeze off machine-gun rounds in a muscle-baring tank top, Foxx to do his cool-cat Obama impression right down to chomping on Nicorette, and Emmerich to revel in what he does best - blast the sets (and plausibility) to kingdom come."

Connie Ogle thinks the film is "not unwatchable. It's not even painful. It's not clever, and it makes no sense, and if the country's secret service forces are this inept I'm emigrating as soon as I'm done writing this, but there's passing fun to be had."

Uhh?

Ogle laments in Miami.com, "If only White House Down had had just one surprising moment - just one! But no."

Liam Lacey points out the main problem with the film in The Globe and Mail, "Tank-sized plot holes aside, the most jarring thing about White House Down is the confusion in tone from scene to scene in the movie's attempt at demographic reach. There's a parade of military hardware, airplane destruction and the threat of nuclear Armageddon for the weapons porn crowd; Tatum stripped down in a soiled muscle shirt for Magic Mike fans; a slapstick car chase on the White House grounds and an officious tour guide, for those who like their comedy broad; violence against children and demonstrations of pint-sized bravery for those who melt for melodrama."

But Christopher Orr says it all.

"(White House Down) is essentially a louder, sillier version of Die Hard, with John Cale standing in for John McClane (who needs those extra consonants?), his precocious daughter standing in for the latter's plucky wife, the White House standing in for Nakatomi Plaza, and--alas--no one even much trying to stand in for Alan Rickman's deliciously wicked Hans Gruber," Orr writes in The Atlantic.

So we've seen it all then?

Yes, says Orr, rather disappointingly.
"White House Down--like pretty much every other Emmerich movie apart from the odd foray into literary conspiracy theory- is a crisply made but profoundly ridiculous exercise in Blowing Things Up," he writes.

"The main flaw of White House Down is that it overstays its welcome, thanks in large part to a silly climax that seems to unfold in three laborious acts. At least, Tatum keeps his shirt off," concludes David Hiltbrand in Philly.com.

Okay then.

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