Geostorm review: When meteorology turns malicious

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Geostorm with Gerard Butler, Jim Sturgess, Abbie Cornish, Andy Garcia and Ed Harris. Directed by Dean Devlin.

MULTIPLE DISASTERS: Looking very much like half a dozen recent disaster movies, in ‘Geostorm’, skyscrapers are toppled as massive tsunamis lay waste to shores

3.5/5

AFTER a series of natural disasters threatened Earth, the world’s leaders came together to create an intricate network of satellites to control global climate, commissioned as “Dutch Boy”.

Something goes terribly wrong and meteorology has turned malicious and the same system built to protect Earth is now attacking it.

The plot follows a satellite designer, Jake Lawson (Gerard Butler), who tries to prevent the occurrence of a storm of epic proportions caused by the malfunctioning climate control satellites he created.

After Dutch Boy neutralises a massive hurricane over Shanghai, Jake is reprimanded by a council sub-committee for activating the satellites without prior approval and is subsequently replaced by his brother Max Lawson (Jim Sturgess), who works under the secretary of state.

A few years later, a United Nations field team stationed in Afghanistan comes across a village that has been flash frozen, along with all of its inhabitants. The United States president calls an emergency meeting of his cabinet, where blame is placed on a technical malfunction.

An investigation is launched and Jake is requested to go on the mission and sent to the International Climate Space Station (ICSS). Meanwhile, a sudden temperature spike in Hong Kong results in gas lines bursting, destroying part of the city in a massive firestorm.

Upon arriving at ICSS, Jake meets the current commander of the space station, Ute Fassbinder (Alexandra Maria Lara), along with her crew. When the crew tries to investigate Hong Kong’s satellite, the robotic arm holding the satellite malfunctions, causing the satellite to be broken beyond repair, and all of its data is lost. Another satellite goes haywire, and Tokyo is struck with a massive hailstorm.

While one subplot follows the mystery in space, another involves Max uncovering a secret programme intended to simulate extreme weather patterns.

The narrative becomes more action packed, and kidnapping, treason and betrayal follow. Jake and his brother alongside his secret agent girlfriend have to race against time to save the planet from the Geostorm and uncover who the true villain is and their reason behind the attack.

The film is packed with lots of CGI and would be an interesting experience to watch in either 3D or 4D. The film has a PG 13 rating and could potentially upset sensitive viewers with all the scenes of destruction and end-of-the-world scenarios.

Although entertaining and enjoyable, Geostorm didn’t feel like something new and its impact lasted as the long as the film. It reminded me of the disaster films in the past 20 years.

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