This weekend, Elquinjena and I saw the disaster movie, “Pompeii” – here’s my take. Spoilers Galore!

Here’s the problem with historical disaster movies… we know how it ends. So, we sit through 90 minutes of made up, romanticized bullshit, just to see that big moment that was recorded in history. Sometimes, the story they made up to keep our interest for the first hour, isn’t bad. Some times it’s horrible. In the case of Pompeii – Hollywood couldn’t even be bothered to come up with an original script.

Pompeii was Titanic + Conan the Barbarian, combined, with a Volcano at the end.

Here we go!

  • Conan the Barbarian
    • Young boy witnesses invaders come into his village and kill his people.
    • Young boy is captured and raised in slavery.
    • Boy grows up to become a great warrior.
    • He then goes to a new town where he sees the guy who killed his people, and his right-hand-man
  • Titanic
    • Dirt poor guy falls for rich girl
    • Rich girl is pursued by rich douchebag
    • Rich douchebag tries to kill dirt poor guy.
    • Rich douchebag fails to kill dirt poor guy.
  • Conan the Barbarian
    • Dirt poor warrior guy gets revenge on douchebags who killed his people.
  • Titanic
    • Dirt poor guy and rich girl run for their lives, and share their love.
  • Pompeii
    • Volcano.

Dear Hollywood.

  • When the earth opens up in fishers, they don’t follow right behind people, including your leading man.
  • If you’re going to have your slave warriors chained to something. They’re usually not given an unlimited length of chain so they can ride wherever they wish in the arena, that chain is only so long.
  • That eruption took WAY too long…
  • Pyroclastic flows travel up to 450 miles per hour.. you can’t out run one, even on the greatest horse in Pompeii.
  • Get your geography right. I know you wanted to keep Mt Vesuvius in frame.. But you shot scenes making it look like Pompeii was directly between the volcano, and the harbor. That’s Herculaneum (which was also destroyed), not Pompeii.

So, I had harsh things to say. Why? Because the event was real. The eruption of Mt Vesuvius was one of the greatest, and terrible, natural disasters in recorded history. Why did Hollywood make up such a story surrounding these events? They could. Few survived the eruption. We don’t really know what happened in the city leading up to moment. The only reason we know what we do, is because Pliny “The Younger” documented what he saw on that day, from across the harbor.

Author: Jethal