So I did go and watch the movie. Got my cotton candy and bottle of water, took a seat and waited through the endless stream of advertisement before the movie starts, while the guy next to me was solving his life's issues on the phone, rather loudly I might add. Fortunately he hung up as the movie started.
So here is what I liked:
* The CGI was very well done, some asked me how it compared to Independence day... I think it is better, quite a bit better, and a lot more of it. The water simulation was as good as the Titanic, the earthquake events where very well done. Great detail, long running utter destruction... the destruction of the west coast was very well done ... in CGI that is. It was utter carnage in a very wide scale, and all of it was shown in meticulous detail. The eruption of Yellowstone was very well done. If a Volcano eruption was ever simulated, and is not done by a few people throwing fluff in front of the camera, than this was it, The eruption itself, was well depicted as blowing all the way to the stratosphere, with the proper shock-waves and Pyroclastic flows. I would have to say that the shock-waves where made a bit too mild, but then again, they alone would have been enough to pulverize all our actors and their equipment in a second, and there would be no movie to do...
* There is very little gore and violence in this movie. It is rated PG, and it is PG, very much so.
* The movie does bring up the profound moral and ethical issue, of who do you select to save, since you do not have the time or the resources to attempt to save everyone. But more on that subject in the next section. But even bringing up the issue is a big positive, since, by today's Hollywood norms, issues like this are not to be discussed in public.
What I did not fully like:
* neutrinos heating up the core of earth, coming from a solar burst ... forget about the fact the neutrinos have very little interaction with matter anyway, it would still take a few hundred million years to actually melt the mantle and loosen the tectonic plates to achieve the the effects depicted in the movie... Also, once you heated the crust and shifted the continents, it would take like a billion years to cool things down again, just simple thermal inertia by the way.
* A significant amount of religious banter, of the lets pray type, showing prayer and religious stuff. A bit even out of place, since this is a science fiction movie, where science really takes a back stool with a broken leg. And it is obvious from the underpinnings of the movie, that prayer is not going to help one bit... just saying, but some characters still do it anyway.
* The movie comes a cropper in the area of plot and character building. Your actors here are mere chess pieces, of the peon type, they have no character , we don't know them, and we don't care about them. They are a faded water painting on ordinary paper. I can say, that likely the most interesting character in this movie is not the hero, or the president, but rather the conspiracy theorist , or rather "factist" if that is a word. He has the most depth and compassion and personality, unfortunately he decides to watch the Yellowstone caldera eruption instead of running for his life. And it tells, when the most interesting and well developed character is an eccentric conspiracy theorist who gets smothered by a flying grove half way through the movie.
* The issue if Who gets on the life saving ships, is flatly, and very immorally solved by exacting an astronomical seat price. This in unacceptable, morally, ethically, scientifically and socially. All this is merely hinted to, if you get my slat here. Only the hero, in the last, like 15 minutes makes a dash for this subject, and delivers a grandstanding speech to allow the otherwise paid (customers) to board another ship, since some of the ships where damaged and would not make it... just a small one minute "please let them be" blurb to deal with a major moral issue... shame, it could have made the movie the talk of the decade, had this aspect of it was more properly, and deeply addressed. This would have made a lot of difference. But the movie stays shallow and intellectually impoverished.
Well, since i have written twice as much about stuff I did not like about the movie, compared to the stuff I did like in the movie, I would want to say, it sucked. But I won't. This movie ,2012, is a great show, very well done disaster movie, no silly effects. Great animation and utter destruction in stupendous detail. Go watch it, but leave you intellect behind. It will not be amused.