‘White House Down’ Review

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Dir: Roland Emmerich (Independence Day, The Day After Tomorrow, 2012)

Cast: Channing Tatum, Jamie Foxx, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jason Clarke, Richard Jenkins, Joey King, Nicolas Wright and James Woods

Synopsis: While on a tour of the White House with his young daughter, a Capitol policeman springs into action to save his child and protect the president from a heavily armed group of paramilitary invaders.

 

*Review Note: This is a non-spoiler review as always.*

 

Well here we go again. The White House is under taken and gets taken over from the inside and it’s up to one man to save the President and the world. Only a few months after Olympus Has Fallen we get the “master of disasters” White House Down. Although it sounds like I’m bashing the movie I am truly not. I did think I wouldn’t enjoy it because of Channing Tatum (sorry Tatum fans, I just don’t completely see it) and because I’ve already seen the story. But, Emmerich’s version isn’t too bad.

Capitol policeman to Speaker of the House Ralpheson (Jenkins) John Cale (Tatum) is determined to impress his estranged and government-trivia-obsessed daughter (King) by becoming a part of the Secret Service. Following an ill-fated interview for the position, the White House is taken over by a paramilitary force whose aim is to kidnap President Sawyer (Foxx). Cale must rise to the occasion and against all odds rescue the president, his daughter and the world.

There are a lot more players in the game, like Secret Service deputy Finnerty (Gyllenhaal), leader of the bad guys Stenz (Jason Clarke) and Secret Service chief, Walker (Woods). The script, thankfully, never gets bogged down in its loaded cast and instead uses them to create a long narrative that is constantly flipping between the various players rather than resting solely on Cale and Sawyer.

Emmerich is known for balancing his movies with drama, humor and action when need be, this is no different. The drama-centric scenes do make some of the stakes much higher and bit emotional but never to the point where it overpowers the humor between Tatum and Foxx’s characters. The action should please some fans. It varies from multiple shootouts to some good ol fashion fist fights. However, most of the action is better when it sticks in the House than outside, excluding the decently fun limo chase on the front lawn.

All in all, White House Down is a dumb-fun summer action movie. Some of the CGI is a bit off which is weird to say when reviewing a Roland Emmerich movie.
White House Down

4 out of 5