Epicenter

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This is 1/5th of a Disaster Movie compilation pack that I got for winning a comedy game show. (Look out world!!). This one stars former porn star Traci Lords as FBI agent Amanda Foster who has been undercover for a year as a “computer specialist” and is brokering a deal between some Russians and a CIA man who is surrendering over some software that’s worth a lot of money because it monitors things in a new way? Who knows. But so, that kind of goes sour and she “arrests him” (handcuffs him to lots of different things) and they are running from everyone, the Russians, a double agent at the FBI, etc.

But this is set in California so during the whole thing earthquakes keep happening. Also Amanda has a daughter who looks like she is going for the coveted “most chokers” medal, who does gymnastics and has a lot of angst and a belly ring even though she’s like eight years old. Well I don’t know how old she is but she is very young. She and her mom get in a fight at the beginning of the movie where she tells her mom she looks like trailer trash (she is wearing a red wig which is the entirety of her ‘undercover’ disguise) then yells that she won’t drive her somewhere. Amanda is upset then goes to a strip club to meet the Russian gangsters.

The first scene of the movie was by far the best part, where it shows the guy (Nick Constantine) who steals the software from his government job (which he only did because he blames them for his wife dying of Leukemia somehow). He goes up to the security desk and the guard is like, “What’s this?” when he opens Nick’s briefcase and sees a walkman in there (this movie was made in 2000) and Nick’s like, “It’s just to listen to music, there’s not a law against Neil Diamond is there?” (the CD in the player) and here is where they missed a wonderful opportunity for the guard to say, “No but there should be!!!” and then them high five. Alas. He then picks up a pack of cigarettes and is like, “Since when do you smoke?” and Nick says, “I do a lot of things since Patricia’s gone” which clearly is the name of his dead wife but would be a WONDERFUL thing to say to people out of context if you don’t want to answer their questions.

Then he does all these gadget based betrayals, where he like uncaps a pen that he plugs headphones into? And the walkman actually has a DVD with security footage of him working at his desk so he can do illegal stuff and not be seen by the cameras. He then takes a smoke bomb out of the false bottom in the cigarette package (an off-brand made to look like Marlboro’s called “Morley’s”) and attaches it to the back of his watch (lotta old school electronics and analog clocks eveywhere) and sets it off in the bathroom so everyone has to evacuate the building while he downloads the software.

So then when they’re in the middle of the deal and they’re sending the software to the Russian guy, in the middle of it downloading all these rabbits in sunglasses just start hopping across the screen and winking and we hear the Russian man say between bites of his sandwich, “these are not codes, these are…bunnies! They are just hopping!” which was the funniest thing in the whole world. (Also way too many people eating in this scene, everyone was talking on the phone/giving orders with full mouths of salmon or whatever and it was weird). Then Nick is like, “yeah you need an encryption chip which I’m only gonna give you when I get my money” (a fun drinking game for this movie would be to take a shot every time someone says, “my money” or there is an earthquake). Then he and Traci (Amanda) escape somehow (I started painting my nails in the middle because I was kind of bored) but these two guys start chasing them. One is this Russian guy who “loves America” so he keeps yelling “come on!!” and trivia about San Francisco in the middle of the car chase. Then their car flips so they jump on the trolley which goes off the tracks and is just railing cars. You know how people will say “New York is one of the characters in the movie” if it’s set there? Well, gravity was one of the characters in this movie set in San Francisco. So many scenes of things falling down hills!

Also, even though she is a trained FBI agent Nick is the one doing everything, getting them out of trouble, so that was annoying. This chase basically lasts the rest of the movie, they stop to meet someone at a restaurant that Traci’s daughter happens to also be at and there is a shootout and an earthquake so Robyn (Traci’s daughter) and this dude she is trying to mack on (Brad) are stuck in an elevator with an old man who is pessimistic and is carrying around a stuffed parrot (why?) while Traci and Nick have to hide in this cellar that starts filling with water. There’s actually a surprisingly beautiful shot of produce floating underwater with shafts of light illuminating a glass window that they decide to shoot and break through. They turn the air duct into a water slide and it spits them out somewhere else. Traci says she needs to go to the mall, which is the place she and her daughter agreed to meet, because Robyn wants to move in with her dad and Traci’s like, “just give me one last chance.” But you would think if there’s a detrimental earthquake that levels half the city and catches the rest of it on fire, they would be like, “we’ll probably talk later” but no, they both still feel the need to uphold this coffee date.

So they get there, then the double agent is there and he wants the chip (everyone wants the chip!) and Nick finally gives it over (it was in his glasses the whole time!) then lots of people try to kill everyone then there’s another earthquake, and Traci, Robyn and Brad leave together and Nick leaves by himself “for my wife.” They also have this whole conversation about money???? Because he’s getting 15 million and Traci’s like, “most people could live on 2 million comfortably” ???? Then the last scene of the movie is her laughing to a newspaper because the headline says “Anonymous Donor Gives 13 Million to Leukemia Charity” and she’s alone in her kitchen laughing, then says “Oh Nick” TO THE NEWSPAPER and that’s the end of the movie.

Pretty bad, maybe if you like disaster movies it would be ok? There is another one in this compilation starring Kevin Sorbo so I’m definitely going to watch that, but honestly everything seems like garbage. They had some kind of budget because they were doing all these car/trolley stunts (I was like is someone gonna get Frida Kahlo’d in this movie??? But no one did) but unfortunately they did not spend that budget on good writers.

1 out of 5 AVN’s would not masturbate again.

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