release year: 1997
genre: action/disaster
viewing setting: home laserdisc, 11/9/97
what I expected: a cheesy disaster movie
what I got: Dante's Peak with slightly better special effects but the same stupid victim syndrome

synopsis: Volcano erupts in L.A., sending a river of lava flowing through downtown.

impressions: This was so much like Dante's Peak that it wasn't funny. Similar elements: stupid people in charge who don't listen to the experts until it's too late, weak victims who get killed because their brains didn't activate in time of crisis, mass burning destruction. At least this time they didn't get too deep into the attraction between the (conveniently single) two main characters. This one had some good lava-burning moments, though I don't think the barricades they used would have stopped that stuff.

acting: Tommy Lee Jones was solid this time, though not up to his Fugitive levels. Several others did good jobs of portraying people under pressure.

quotable: "This city is finally paying for its arrogance."

final word: Watchable disaster flick, but it's no Towering Inferno

rating: C

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