So…..it’s not the major release blockbuster movie but another movie, with a much smaller budget and with an unknown cast, that has the same theme in it’s storyline. San Andreas Quake is a 2015 small budget release starring directed by John Baumgartner who also wrote the screenplay for this film that stars Jhey Castles, Jason Woods & Grace Van Dien.
Seismologist & scientist, Molly Dunn, is now a professor in a Los Angeles area college. She was discredited when her earlier project about creating a system that predicts earthquakes was a failure. Although teaching students and living with her husband and 18+ step-daughter, she is still working on a new prediction method. To her delight her new model seems to working fine, when she predicts almost to the exact moment (just 60 seconds delayed) a 4.0 quake; she warns the patrons of a campus coffeeshop. However the data she is collecting from several sensors in the region shows that a huge earthquake of 10.0 magnitude is about to hit the Los Angeles area and she tries hard to get the warning out but no one believes her.
Molly is able to convince her smart-Alec student Nick as she shows him the data while they were at the coffeeshop. He also just so happens to be the new boyfriend in Ali’s (Molly’s step-daughter’s) life. Molly warns her husband Hank, who is taking tourists on a helicopter tour and calls Ali at the upscale hotel where she works as a receptionist but the lines go dead as they are talking. Now Molly races to the hotel with Nick in his car and must survive a breaking bridge, a badly done CGI hippo momma that charges at them when their car hits her baby hippo, a desperate woman who pulls a gun on Nick to get the car for her and her young daughter and leaves them having to hoof it to the city. Hank meanwhile loses his chopper when a small plan crashes into it when it is on the ground and his tourist clients pay for a small plane provided he takes them to collect their dog first.
Ali and her co-worker Jackson have to help an elderly couple when the husband suffers a heart attack while stuck in an elevator. A reluctant hotel guest also helps them but they are late in getting to the bus that takes people away from the city. Molly and Nick get to the hotel via a tunnel, where they almost die of suffocation and head to the rooftop where they hope Hank can get to them on time. The elderly woman stays behind as her husband is now dead and the hotel guest is taken away by soldiers. Molly, Ali, Nick & Jackson head to the rooftop but Jackson falls off a broken window and the other 3 make it to the rooftop. At the last minute as the 12.0 earthquake destroys buildings nearby, Hank arrives in a chopper and the 3 make it safely and they take off as the city gets destroyed below them.
Really badly written with too man coincidences and bad acting by most. Jhey Castles looks a lot like Margiska Hargitay while the others barely do a good enough job but the bad CGI cannot save this story. A 3.5 outta 10 (and that is being generous)