Former FBI agent and amputee Will Sawyer (Dwayne Johnson) is hired as a security advisor for a brand-new Hong Kong skyscraper called The Pearl. Known as one of the tallest and most secure structures in the world. What results is a terrorist attack on the building where Will’s family are trapped above a blazing fire. Will takes it upon himself to save his family and defeat the terrorists for once and for all.
So first and foremost let’s get the films simplistics out of the way. It’s basically Die Hard for a new generation, we know this. We move on. Skyscraper is one hell of a cheesy good time with death-defying stunts and crazy CGI action sequences that make me feel like Dwayne Johnson should have died about 30-40 times in this particular film. Like Superman, he manages to avoid just about every natural thing that would kill a human in seconds.
With realism out of the window, I tried to salvage something within the script. Nope, nothing there either. Ok, so we move onto the plot. Nope, nothing there either. But whilst this film is as hollow as the empty skyscraper itself it’s still a good watch for all the insane events that are taking place on screen.
Our terrorists aren’t really believable or have anything about them that makes me feel afraid for Will (Johnson) at any stage throughout the movie. It always feels as thou Will is in complete control as he breezes through every task at hand on the way to rescuing his family. It all feels very predictable despite being an enjoyable watch, the entertainment value is more of comedic nature when you see all the outlandish ‘San Andreas‘ style bullshit from start to finish being portrayed in an unapologetic manner.
I must admit that the building does look absolutely incredible. I heard a rumor that the man who designed the Burj Khalifa in Dubai was taken on as a consultant for this movie and you can certainly see some beautiful work has gone into the recreation of The Pearl. It’s a breathtakingly stunning building complete with indoor waterfalls, luxury apartments, malls and more. I’m certainly no architect enthusiast but the CGI building itself was a saving grace for me. It was like watching a very explosive (literally) computer-generated episode of MTV Cribs.
It’s nice to see Neve Campbell back into a leading role in a big Hollywood blockbuster. She is a welcome presence as Will’s wife Sarah. Although her character has very little to do she has good chemistry with Dwayne on-screen and their family dynamic makes sense and works well.
Whilst I can never get bored of Dwayne Johnson’s relentless action-packed movies (Rampage, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, Fast and Furious) I just feel as thou these are being churned out without thought or care. A little more time focused on depth of script and characters such as henchmen with a leader to rival that of Hans Gruber (Alan Rickman) in Die Hard and we could have had something pretty special here.
Sadly, it just wasn’t meant to be and once again Dwayne Johnson’s star power saves the movie, just. Without Dwayne in this particular feature, I don’t even want to think about how much this movie would have sucked without him.