‘Skyscraper’: Johnson and Campbell Keep Us Hanging in the Air


By Tracy Wang

Right after Dwayne Johnson’s ‘Rampage’ in April, we see him again in action in ‘Skyscraper’. Now a father who needs to save his wife and two kids from the world’s tallest burning building, Johnson again gives us a look at him doing all the impossible things, which include ‘flying’ into a burning building.

Will Sawyer (Dwayne Johnson), a former FBI Hostage Rescue Team, is an amputee because of a mission gone wrong. After some years of that accident, he now specializes in accessing security for skyscrapers, and is happy with his family life.

A former team member introduces him to the creator of the world’s tallest building in Hong Kong, and he becomes responsible for accessing the security there. However, this opportunity that is thought to be great turns out to be a disaster, when some terrorists trying to get information from the creator frame Will for a crime that he did not do. Now, his family is in danger, and all he has is himself. How will he be able to save his family and himself?

Like so many of Johnson’s movies, we are taken on a ride to save the world or some important people in his character’s lives. In ‘Skyscraper’, though he no longer needs to save the world or a whole city from some gigantic animals, the stake seems to be so much higher since he needs to save his family single-handedly. With family being its central theme, the movie is selling one of the themes that audiences never seem to get tired of.

What could be a bit questionable is how we can still see the movie using some traces of the plot point of an American, usually a white guy, saving the world or saving Asians from their own people. However, with Ng Chin Han in the role of the creator of ‘The Pearl’, and Hannah Quinlivan in the role of the villain Xia, we see some Asian characters who are ready to fight their own battles.

One highlight in ‘Skyscraper’ remains to be Johnson’s performance. He takes on this role with his wit and muscles, and we easily buy into his character. However, one character who seems to shine even brighter than him is his wife, played by Neve Campbell. As a navy surgeon, she is more than capable to take care of herself and her two kids, and she even shows some killer moves near the end that save some lives. After seeing so many husbands taking care of their families, it is truly refreshing to see the wife here standing shoulder to shoulder to her husband.

With just 102 minutes, the film does not waste any time on the setting; instead, it jumps almost right into the action that keeps us hanging and interested. Even if we all have seen many of Johnson’s movies, and can expect what will happen, ‘Skyscraper’ still retains some surprises and some mystery, and audiences who love a bit of a thrill can definitely get some from this movie in 3D.