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The year is 1997, and World Peace seems to have come, with most classic weapons of mass destruction having been abandoned. However, orbiting the Earth there is the European/American space station FLORIDA ARKLAB, capable of controlling the weather at any location on the planet underneath. A civil project by nature, it might be abused as an offensive weapon, since it could deliver devastation to any potential adversary simply by creating natural disasters such as storms and floods. No wonder the space station soon becomes the central point in rising political tensions between East and West, next stop World War 3 (as indicated by the German tagline (transl.) "The end of our future has already begun"). We're following the main protagonist Billy Hayes, an astronaut aboard the station, as he wades through a plot of secrecy and sabotage trying to tell friend from foe in the process.
I'm not a huge fan of writer/director Roland Emmerich, especially after recently sitting through his recent schmaltzfest The Day After Tomorrow (2004), but I did enjoy one of his earlier films in 1994's Stargate. His version of Godzilla (1998) wasn't so bad, and Independence Day (1996), despite starring Will `Mr. Overexposed' Smith, was enjoyable on the first pass, but subsequent viewings, once you get past the amazing special effects (or the `Wow' factor), highlight huge, gaping holes throughout the story. Whatever criticisms I may have about the Emmerich and his techniques (I think his main problem is trying to cover up unsubstantial plots with dazzling special effects), I will concede he has the ability to entertain, so long as you can buy what he's selling, in terms of not looking too deeply into his stories, but rather just enjoying the ride (I tried to do this for his The Day After Tomorrow, but I just couldn't get past the sloppiness within the plot). The Noah's Ark Principle (1984) is credited as Emmerich's first, real feature, a film he wrote and directed as his graduate film school project. It's a German production, featuring a German cast, none of whom I'm familiar with, so I won't delve into their particulars.
The year is 1997 (remember, this film was released in 1984, so it's intended to be set in the not so distant future), and there's a happenins' going on at the Florida Arklab international space station (yeah, I know...seems like kind of a dumb name for an international space station). The purpose of the station seems to be mainly to monitor the weather on Earth, and provide global forecast reports, with the possibility of in the future the station actually influencing the weather by some means as yet unexplained.Read more ›
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