10 Filmmaking Lessons from Armageddon

20160409_190218_smallIf one were to define the word “crowdpleaser” it would undoubtedly be a link to Michael Bay and Jerry Bruckheimer’s Armageddon. It is the pinnacle of collaboration. With nearly a dozen writers (screenplay by, story by, and ghost writers/polishers), a huge ensemble of actors, a picture perfect cinematographer, a war horse director, a solid musical score, and a culturally sensational soundtrack (both oldies and the classic original song by Aerosmith), this film fires on all cylinders. It’s a visceral, emotional, and auditory roller coaster that always gives you the feels. From laugh out loud jokes, edge of your seat suspense, tear jerking finales, to triumphant nostalgia, this film has it all in all the right ratios and for all the right durations. In the spirit of its heroes, it was All Go, No Quit fun.

Jonathan Hensliegh

  1. Laugh out loud moments. The plethora of characters added comedic quips to the scenarios.
  2. The crew were comedic heroes, Bruce Willis and the NASA scientists were the proper action heroes. Completely capable. The Rock: Nick Cage is comedic hero, Sean Connery was proper action hero. Bad Boys: Martin Lawrence was comedic hero, Will Smith was proper action hero.
  3. Tragedy was not basked in. Problems were presented and solutions were found. People died, we acknowledged their death, and then moved forward, like heroes. If we weren’t living our lives to the fullest, then what did our friends die for? Compare to Star Wars 7, how the film ended on a downer.
  4. Celebrations: The crowd cheered when our heroes cheered. Ben Affleck, Peter Stormare, and Michael Duncan landing and cheering was an applause moment. When Bruce Willis informs the government, Gen. Kimsey, that they have a problem because they have a hole to drill, and the NASA scientists cheer, we cheered. This came after one of the most intense scenes in cinema. Which included so many laughs without losing tension (Sir, the override; it’s been overridden. What are you doing with a gun in space? Okay, what did I miss?).
  5. Big egos. The movie was ultra-machismo and comedy came from one upping each other or doing emotional juvenile teasing or yelling. “No, Liev, I don’t know anything. This button? I don’t know what it does? All I know is that there’s a dot and I’m trying to get us there.” “You’ll be heroes, just like me….Finally, I’m a real hero!”


This entry was posted in Articles, DuenasFilms. Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.