<Review by: Sailesh Ghelani>
Directed by Brad Peyton. Starring Josh Hutcherson, Vanessa Hudgens, Dwayne Johnson, Luis Guzman, Michael Caine, Kristin Davis.
Not expecting much and consequently getting even less, Journey 2 takes you on an ‘adventure’ so formula it is lacklustre.
So young explorer Sean Anderson (Josh Hutcherson) bounces berries off his buff step-dad Hank’s (Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson) ample pecs. This in step-daddy’s arsenal – apart from singing an adaptation of What a Wonderful World and cracking a secret code – to bring him closer to his son by giving him advice on what chicks like: namely jiggling your pectoral muscles.
Sean’s adventurer grandfather Alexander (Michael Caine) is stuck on author Jules Verne’s Mysterious Island but manages to get a message out to Sean who comes to his rescue. That’s where Gabato (Luis Guzman) and his daughter (“she looks just like me”, he says) Kailani (Vanessa Hudgens) come in providing transport to the centre of the storm that apparently hides the island.
Mixing fantasy stories by Verne with classics like Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift, Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island and elements from 20,000 Leagues Under The Sea, the filmmakers have still managed to make this an irritating and trite piece of crap. The dialogue is so bad you can anticipate what’s going to come out of their mouths (Kailani falling from the sky into Sean’s lap while he rides a giant bee and she says: “You saved me!”).
So it’s one thing to have muscular Dwayne Johnson display bare bones acting skills – his singing is however quite good – but yet another to see legend Michael Caine sink to such horrific lows in this B movie. He’s haggard, stumbling and infuriatingly irritating. Makes you wish that people like him and Anthony Hopkins and all those classy, distinguished actors would just bow out gracefully. Surely they don’t need the money. Do they?
The 3D is pretty good though, with bits and pieces flying out at you making you wince a bit. The Mysterious Island isn’t all that fantastical. Only good thing was Captain Nemo’s sub, the Nautilus, at the end.