If you live in LA right now you might not be the happiest camper if you plan to do any travelling. A 10 mile stretch of Interstate 405 has been closed to demolish a bridge and the result has been coined Carmageddon. The closure is expected to last 53 hours which in government terms means it might be a week.
The stretch of highway that has been closed normally has 500,000 cars on it a day and I have heard on the news where local officials have advised people to stay home and avoid travelling and of course the witty media has pegged it CARMAGEDDON!!!! So I figured what better to help you survive Carmageddon then a list of Armageddon movies to help you get through it. I was going to list my favourites of all time but instead I tried to build a list of favourites from a variety of styles and genres o that hopefully everyone can find at least one movie to enjoy.
Most of these films are available on NetFlix on Demand and of course all of them can be picked up at your local video store. So with no further ado here are 10 Armageddon Movies to help you cope with Carmageddon the most terrifying thing to hit LA since Snake Plisken!
Planet of the Apes: If you like classic sci-fi you can never go wrong with Planet of the Apes. Frankly nothing is more terrifying then a world ruled by Apes and mankind under their yoke. Charlton Heston starred in the 1960’s classic sci-fi adventure of mankind’s doom at the hands of ‘dirty filthy apes’. Packed full of corny one liners it is the epitomy of classic sci-fi with strong characters, sexy female leads and questionable science.
If you are not into the more classic films you can opt for the Tim Burton remake which starred Mark Wahlberg which was actually quite entertaining considering it stars a former underwear model. Of course you can also wait to watch the new prequel Rise of the Apes which hits theatres next month and stars James Franco.
Escape From New York: For fans of action packed b-movie fun there is Escape From New York or the sequel which is just as campy and fun Escape From LA ( which is likely more suitable here ) Who is the baddest man to ever survive an apocalyptic future? Snake Plisken is, that’s who!
Admittedly the world has not completely gone to hell in a hand bag in Escape from New York but Kurt Russell faces down with gangs and apocalyptic insanity when his death sentence is commuted and he is dispatched into New York to rescue the President of the United States who has crash landed into the state which has been turned into a walled in prison.
12 Monkeys: 12 Monkeys packs an all star cast including Bruce Willis, Madeline Stowe, Brad Pitt and Christopher Plummer. Set in 2035 it is about a prisoner volunteer who is sent back in time to figure out what decimated the earth’s population and made the surface of the earth uninhabitable.
This is much more intense and deep thinking material then the previous films I mentioned and is typical of director Terry Gilliam. 12 Monkeys is a very deep film with intense imagery and powerful characters with some real command performances. This film is for apocalyptic film fans that like films that are poignant and thought provoking.
Deep Impact: Deep Impact is the smarter version of Armageddon which was released in the same period. Starring Morgan Freeman, Tea Leoni and Elijah Wood it is about a meteor that is going to destroy the earth and how people come to terms with their inevitable destruction.
What makes this film so powerful is the fact that you can easily relate to not only the nature of this apocalyptic event, but also the characters and their struggles. It works so well because of how easily you can connect with these ‘average characters’ and the very plausible nature of the earths destruction.
Armaggedon: I couldn’t leave Armageddon off a list about Carmageddon now could I? Armageddon is classic Michael Bay and when I think about a highway that normally carries 500,000 people a day getting closed down for a bridge demolition I think Bay. The film had a big cast including Bruce Willis, Billy Bob Thornton, Liv Tyler and Ben Affleck and is about a meteor ( yeah sounds familiar ) that is about to destroy the earth.
But unlike director Mimi Ledor’s ‘Deep Impact’ this is a Michael Bay movie so Earth ‘aint gonna take it’. They don’t dispatch astronauts, or scientists they send Roughneck oil drillers into space to take on the meteor in the manliest of manly men fashion. Featuring a great soundtrack, tough characters and gunfights in space it’s a fun movie that is to this day a favourite of mine for all the wrong reasons. This one is clearly for you action junkies.
Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy: You think you have it bad that the highway is closed and you cannot get anywhere? What if an intergalactic company was putting a highway where the earth is and your whole planet is getting destroyed. The 405 being closed is a nuisance the earth being destroyed to make way for an intergalactic super highway well that is definitely Armageddon.
Based on the classic BBC radio show by Douglas Adams this movie is for the fans of sci-fi comedy and packs crazy characters, insane antics, deep messages wrapped in comedy and lots of fun. Definitely not for everyone this one is for us geeks who loves classics, cheeky humour and sci-fi.
The Day After Tomorrow: I hear on the weather reports its pretty hot in Los Angeles right now and temperatures will keep rising with Carmageddon and the 405 closed so The Day After Tomorrow should help and cool things off.
Dennis Quaid and Jake Gyllenhaal star in this film of global warning on steroids as the earth is suddenly slammed with the full effects of Global Warming and mankind goes the way of the dinosaurs as the arctic freeze destroys the world. A character drama with a good mix of emotion, action and environmental messages this is for film buffs who like a moral message.
Children of Men: Alfonso Cuaron directed the movie about a future where mankind is facing exctinction due to the fact that women can no longer bear children. This Oscar Nominated film is stark, moving and emotional with a powerful cast including Clive Owen, Julianne Moore, and the iconic Michael Caine.
This movie is for people who find films like Escape From LA to low brow and Escape from Planet of The Apes to cheesy. This is a beautiful and intelligent look at a dark future brought on by sterility and what a few men and women will do to survive it.
Doomsday: Doomsday is somewhat akin to Armageddon but this one is for the horror fans. It is a balls to the wall action packed film from the mind of Neil Marshall who is best known for Dog Soldiers one of the greatest werewolf movies ever made. Doomsday is set in future England as a virus runs rampant through the country.
A crack team of soldiers led by Rhona Mitra is dispatched into a long abandoned no man’s land to find a cure and finds themselves entering a world without rules featuring cannibals, sadists, mad doctors with a god complex and plenty of extreme violence. Clearly not for the children but this is for those who found Children of Men a bit tame and want something grittier.
Wall E: Last and certainly not least we have one of the best films ever made by Pixar, WALL E. Obviously I put this on the list for the kids but this one is great because children and adults will enjoy it equally. It’s the loveable story of Wall E a robot left on a long abandoned earth who is cleaning up garbage.
It’s a story of adventure, love and action in classic Pixar style. This is not only a great movie to watch during Carmaggeddon but it is also a movie that every film fan regardless of age or personal tastes should see and own. It’s just that good!*