’Big meets bigger’ is one of the taglines for The Rock’s new movie Rampage, and everything in it looks appropriately massive.
In it, The Rock plays antisocial primatologist Davis Okoye, head of an anti-poaching unit and super best buds with a rare albino gorilla named George. When George mysteriously grows gigantic and becomes unhinged, it’s up to Davis both to stop George (and Lizzie the mutated crocodile and Ralph the mutated wolf) from destroying America, and to stop the army from destroying George.
Naomie Harris (Moneypenny from the Daniel Craig Bond films), Joe Mangianello (the big fella from Magic Mike) and Malin Akerman (Silk Spectre from Watchmen) co-star, but it’s basically The Rock And Big Stuff. Here’s the new trailer:
Isn’t it nice to see a film acknowledge that The Rock is The Rock? Like, in San Andreas (the last film that The Rock and director Brad Peyton worked together on), he plays a helicopter pilot who just happens to be enormous. When he talks to people they don’t begin every sentence with “Bloody hell”, which is unrealistic, because if someone who looked like The Rock spoke to you you would absolutely say “Bloody hell”.
It’s nice that in this he’s fully like, “Yeah, I’ve got really big arms, look at my really big arms, don’t even think about fighting me, my arms are so big.”
The Rock posted a shorter version of the trailer on his Instagram, while hanging out on a deserted football field:
There’s something a bit odd about the film in general though. When the movie was announced, Peyton said it would “be a lot more emotional, a lot scarier and a lot more real than you’d expect”. Here’s a question: why?
This, after all, is the game it’s based on:
If we’d expect it to be silly, can’t it be silly? Surely Rampage by its very nature is silly. Why can’t it be silly? Can’t the film of a really silly game about giant animals knocking buildings down just be silly? Does it have to be “emotional, scary and real”?
In the game, the giant mutant animals are essentially the heroes - you play as them, smashing building after building, destroying everything within grasp, eating people and stamping on tanks. There’s no plot as such, you just go from city to city in the United States until everything is rubble. It’s great. It’s not emotional, scary or real.
This looks fine, and it’ll do well - San Andreas made a lot, giant monsters are fun and the day will never come when we don’t watch a film with The Rock in. But, BUT, but there is absolutely room in the world for a Rampage movie where a massive gorilla, a massive wolf and a massive lizard all battle against - get this - a massive The Rock. Think how great that would be, the already-big The Rock enlarged to the size of a skyscraper, punching a gorilla in the head up against the Empire State Building, whirling a train around his head like nunchucks, smashing an aircraft carrier into a giant wolf’s face, giving a giant mutant crocodile a Rock Bottom. Awesome.
Or, or or or, what about if The Rock is on a foreign planet or something, and there’s a society of really tiny people there, and they try to kill him, so he has to fight back, and he smashes all their stuff, and we’re on his side as he does it, but then at the end there’s an I Am Legend (book, not film) type of twist and he suddenly sees things from their perspective and realises that he is basically their Godzilla? That would be good, right? He could scream “I REGRET MY RAMPAGE” when he realises he’s the baddie, and throw himself into a miniature nuclear power plant.
If anyone from Hollywood wants to get in touch, please do. Rampage comes out on 20 April.