Do you know what geology is all about? Geology is the study of the Earth, the materials of which it is made, the structure of those materials, and the processes acting upon them. It includes the study of organisms that have inhabited our planet. the most important part of geology is the study of how Earth’s materials, structures, processes and organisms have changed over time. What about movies? Have you ever heard about it? Surely all people in the entire world know what movie is. Movie can be defined as a form of entertainment that enacts a story by sound and a sequence of images giving the illusion of continuous movement but how it is related to geology?
Since decades ago a lot of geology-related movies were published. Surprisingly, some of these kinds of movies was so outstanding and became box office. These are some examples of movies that are related to geology. If we are talking about asteroids, there are two most popular movies about asteroid impact which are Armageddon and Deep Impact. Both movies were released in 1998 and it is about a decade ago yet still gets attention until today. In Armageddon, the Space Shuttle Atlantis is destroyed by a meteor shower, while they are fixing a satellite in orbit. The entire crew was died. Then, meteorites bombard New York City and several other parts of the world, and National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) discovers that an asteroid the size of Texas, traveling at 22,000 miles per hour, will collide with Earth in 18 days and will destroy the planet. It is crystal clear that Armageddon is a geology-related movie since it is about asteroid. Besides, Deep Impact is about the possible extinction of human life after a comet is discovered headed toward within a year. Humans have to prepare for their survival as a comet is on a collision course with earth. Unluckily, only eight hundred thousand people were randomly selected to be saved in order to keep the human race alive.
Another type of geology-movie is about global change. In 2004, The Day After Tomorrow which is about climate change and in 2003, The Core which is about global magnetism was released. As well as the movie about asteroid impact, this kind of movie is also get great attention from public since the narration of these movies is much related to human being. In summary, The Day After Tomorrow is a look at what the world would look like if the greenhouse effect and global warming continued. The main character of the story is a paleoclimatologist, Professor Jack Hall. A paleoclimatologist is a scientist who studies the ways weather patterns changed in the past and in this movie, he tries to save the world from the effects of global warming while also trying to see his son, Sam, who was in New York City as part of a scholastic competition. At the same time, the city was overwhelmed by the chilling beginnings of the new Ice Age. Meanwhile, Dr. Hall also going against the flow since he is nearly the only one going north as the others races to south. On the other hand, in The Core, for unknown reasons, the Earth’s inner core has stopped rotating, causing the planet’s electromagnetic field to rapidly deteriorate. In order to resolve the problem, government and military officials call upon geophysicist, Dr. Josh Keyes and his crew of five goes down to the central of the Earth. Their mission is to detonate a nuclear device that will reactivate the core by dropping a nuclear bomb.
The film Earthquake which was released on 1974 and 10.5 which was released on 2004 are about earthquakes. From the title itself we can guess what is shown in the movie Earthquake. In Earthquake, there are several stories of different people. The main story is about a Construction Engineer, Stuart Graff who is estranged from his wife, Remy, and has an affair with Denise Marshall, the widow of a co-worker. Meanwhile, Remy tries to persuade her father, Sam Royce, who is Stuart’s employer, to use his influence to stop Stuart from seeing Denise. Rogue policeman Lew Slade is suspended from the Los Angeles Police Department for having punched an obtuse officer from another jurisdiction. Then, Slade contemplates quitting the police force. Jody, a grocery store manager, lusts after Rosa Amici, sister of Sal, the assistant to Miles Quade, an aspiring daredevil motor cyclist. When a major earthquake rips through Los Angeles, the lives of all these people are devastated. What about 10.5? In a nutshell, 10.5 is a disaster film that wonders what might happen if the Western United States is ever ravaged by unprecedented earthquakes. After one quake on Seattle, another strikes California, this one worse than the first. With scientists speculating that an earthquake registering 10.5 on the Richter scale could be next, the U.S. president enlists the help of a seismologist. His aim is to formulate a plan to prevent the deaths of millions of people.
Twister and Night of the Twisters are the films about tornadoes which were released in 1996. In Night of the Twisters, A peaceful Nebraska farm community becomes the setting for an unprecedented disaster when it is struck by a deadly series of strong tornados. The story is told from the viewpoint of a 12-year-old boy, Dan who is forced to overcome his own terror to save the lives of friends and family in the horrifying aftermath. On the other hand, Twister is totally different from Night of the Twisters since the story is about conflict in adult’s life. The movie begins when Bill, a weatherman goes to have his wife, Jo to sign the divorce papers so he can marry his girlfriend, Melissa. Jo finds a collection of record breaking tornados and Bill follows along, soon his duties shift from divorcing Jo to helping her with record breaking technology to create a better warning system.
Volcano and Dante’s Peak are the films about volcanism and both of them were released on 1997. What happen in the movie Volcano? After a minor earthquake in Los Angeles, a giant burst of lava is released from the La Brea Tar Pits, resulting in the birth of a new volcano under the city. Scientists noticed that the temperature of a lake rises 6 degrees in 12 hours but government is reluctant to believe them but they learn their lesson when lava begins to spill out into the streets and to destroy buildings and cars. What about Dante’s Peak? The film begins with the volcanic eruption in Colombia where volcanologist Dr. Harry Dalton attempts to evacuate with his love, Marianne. As they begin heading out of the town, large pieces of volcanic rocks begin to crash onto the small town, one of which penetrates the vehicle and kills Marianne. 4 years later, Dr. Harry receives a call from his boss, Paul Dryfus to check on a Cascades volcano called Dante’s Peak. While the town of the same name is celebrating their accomplishment to be number two on the most wanted place to live in the country, he meets Rachael Wando, the mayor of the town and owns a small business of food and drinks. Harry notices tress, animals and even people had died recently near the volcano while he is checking on Dante’s Peak. Then, he decided to put Dante’s Peak on alert, but people, not listen to him because of no real evidence. For a week, the volcano was not overly active, but then the activity began to increase, just as the town was on alert, Dante’s Peak erupts.
Another important part in geology is Paleontology. Paleontology is the study of ancient or prehistoric life on earth. Its main goal is to investigate the evolution of plant and animal species as well as the earth’s ancient ecosystems and climate as a whole. Although concerned with life, paleontology is actually a branch of geology and it is the study of physical nature. Jurassic Park gives an explosive impact to the audience when it was released in 1993 and it is one of the great movies about paleontology. An island full of living dinosaurs had been able to be created by huge advancements in scientific technology. John Hammond has invited four individuals, a paleobotanist, a mathematician and his two grandchildren to join him at Jurassic Park. However, their park visit is anything but disaster as the park’s security system breaks down, the prehistoric creatures break out, and no more excitement. It occurs when one of the workers in the park has shut down all the electricity in his attempts to steal the dinosaurs’ embryos. Now, it’s become a race for survival with everyone located all over the island. Apart from it, The Land Before Time (1988) and Dinosaur (2000) also the examples of geology-related movies in paleontology.
Now we can obviously see that a lot of geology-related movies or also known as disaster movies were published since ten years ago until today. Furthermore, most of them were so outstanding and get a great attention not only on the day that they were released but still being watched until today. Apart from that, the film maker seem to compete each other to make the best film ever but it is a fact that scientific accuracy is not generally at the top of their to-do list when making a movie. If we see those movies in the perspective of geology we can see that it is drifting from the real fact of science. For example, it is a fact that two space shuttles cannot be launched simultaneously or, even if we could, they would never fly like a pair of the Navy’s Blue Angels stunt planes because it isn’t safe but we can see it in Armageddon. In addition, it is the fact that space stations orbiting our planet are not refueling ports for deep space missions but contrarily, it happens in Armageddon. In a nutshell, when it comes to science in the movies, it is really not surprised that the fact that they show is so far from accurate.
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