So here’s some good popcorn cinema. Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson is a helicopter rescue pilot, there’s a massive earthquake, his daughter and estranged wife are out there somewhere needing rescuing. Get Paul Giamatti in to play a Professor of Exposition and fill in the blanks etc.
As well as the usual scenes of destruction, daring do and realigning of the correct family unit, San Andreas works because of Johnson’s persona. The guy is sun-blockingly huge and as ridiculous to behold as Arhnold (who never made sense outside of roles that played on his size) but he has a lightness of presence that makes him seem, well, sort of normal. Something the Austrian never had. And, unlike 2012 (2009), The Day After Tomorrow (2004) etc, the film itself is devoid of the usual dower messaging that drowns out the sugar rush.
Going back to the smash bangs, because that’s what you’re paying for, there’s plenty to enjoy (despite some floaty CGI) including a tsunami climb and a few genuinely smart solutions for problems. Granted, you won’t linger on this for long but a good time is a good time is a good time,,,