White House Down: the action-packed thriller comes just in time for July 4th

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In Roland Emmerich’s film, White House Down, the audience is given quite the thrill. Taking place in Washington D.C, a story of undercover activities and deception unfolds. The film bears a striking resemblance to the recently released flick, Olympus Has Fallen, which also features the takeover of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. White House Down enables viewers to sense the urgency with which everyone behaves when terrorists hijack and threaten several of the most important people in our nation.

Featuring Channing Tatum as John Cale, an unemployed man who desires to work for the Secret Service, and Jamie Foxx as President James Sawyer, the duo attempt to escape from the White House which has been infiltrated by insurrectionaries. These terrorists have planned bombings to throw the government into anarchy. The terrorists motives prove critical, however, there is little development to their characters. The decision to cast Foxx as President Sawyer was questionable. While he succeed in playing a serious role, his lackluster emotion didn’t bode well. Emmerich was clearly using realism and trying to use an African- American actor to play Barack Obama, however, Denzel Washington or Samuel L. Jackson would have been a better choice for his role.

Cale’s daughter, Emily (Joey King), plays an adventurous little girl who’s fostered an impressive desire to understand how American politics function. In order to satisfy her, Cale obtains passes to the White House. Her inquisitive nature ends up being one of the driving forces in Cale’s persistence and valor to stay in the White House and defend it.

Any good action movie shouldn’t take it’s self too seriously, it shouldn’t be afraid to make a joke once in awhile. Although. I could tell when a joke was being made;  it didn’t elicit a laugh. By far, this film’s strengths were its action scenes and special effects. Contrary to Man of Steel or The Great Gatsby, White House Down’s special effects seemed more realistic and it allowed for me to truly experience the tumult.

The nature of American patriotism also is a key motif throughout the film. Not only are there verbal references to it, but, Emily embodies the patriotism that engulfs us all. When the film came to a close, I actually swelled up with a patriotic nature and got that “dry mouth” feeling that we sometime get in times of strong emotion.

The film was very enjoyable and I’d  recommend it to those who enjoy war-action films and serious combat.

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