Like many people who love films I’m never quite sure what to make of Roland Emmerich. He’s made some sci-fi classics, such as Stargate and Universal Soldier, which I loved. And I’m even a fan of the bubble-gum Independence Day, and even the generally reviled Godzilla. Though I draw the line at the monumentally dumb The Day After Tomorrow.
But none of these previous directorial efforts or any of the other movies he’s written or produced will prepare you for just how horrifically bad 10,000 BC is. In places it makes the Raquel Welch dino-fest One Million Years B.C., on which it’s loosely hinged, seem in comparison like the work of David Lean, or a Bernardo Bertolucci epic.
Let’s be honest here, Roland. I’ve seen episodes of Scooby Doo that had more character development, witty dialogue and believable monsters than this movie has. And for making me sit through it I’d happy see the first genetically re-engineered sabre-toothed tiger set on you purely for the entertainment value of seeing that spectacle.
Given that it’s so painful a viewing experience, releasing it on Blu-ray is actually an insult to accompany this injury, and not something to be admired. You now get to see the very poorly conceived and rendered CGI pre-historic creatures in all their entirely naff glory, and not hidden by the blur of DVD pixilation.
Actually, when you see that they list as a special feature that the movie is also on the disc in standard definition, you begin to wonder if that was included out of a sense of guilt? If they intended to go down that route, a 10,000 BC in 60 seconds would have also been appreciated.
Other extras include a couple of lightweight 13 minute featurettes including one ironically titled ‘Inspiring an Epic’, and when that epic comes along I’ll be glad to cover it for Geek!
There are also some deleted scenes and a three-minute long and generally unfinished alternative ending. This finally could have been the perfect end, had it been seen worthy enough to have its effects completed, and had it been moved to just after the opening sequence. I’m sure someone out there will love the digital mammoths and the painfully contrived adventure contained in here, and they’re welcome to it. For my part, it’s made me reassess the works of Uwe Boll, and the cinematic masterclass that was Gigli.
It also makes me very concerned about Fantastic Voyage, another Welch classic that Emmerich has in pre-production currently. A modern version of this movie could be amazing – please don’t leave your brain in the trailer home this time Roland!