It's hard to believe it was four years ago, that the folks at New Line Cinema decide to reboot the Jules Verne classic "Journey to the Center of the Earth" using Brendon Frasier in the lead role as Trevor Anderson. It also began the realization that Brendon Frasier is a terrible actor!


The film made money due to the special effects, Josh Hutcherson and Anita Briem; not because of Frasier. Though Warner Brothers made over $240 million worldwide on the movie, they know they probably could have made more with someone else. A more recognizable and believable talent than Frasier.


Enter Dwayn "The Rock" Johnson who has proven his bankability over and over again. For some reason, moviegoers (especially kids) love him. Adding him to the Fast and the Furious franchise produced its largest gross ever and, at $626 million, represent one of the biggest films of 2010. So WB kept Hutchenson and brought on The Rock as his stepfather Hank.

"Journey 2: The Mysterious Island" is not a reboot of the Jules Verne classic, it is a different approach using Hutcherson (as Sean) as a Jules Verne fan who is looking for his grandfather (Michael Caine). Grandpa was a true believer in Verne and was on a lifetime quest to find the Mysterious Island from the Verne book.


However, no one has heard from him in years. Sean, after breaking into a satellite ground station and getting arested, decyphers a code that he feels only his grandfather could have sent.


In the meantime, his stepfather (Rock) is suffering through the typical my-stepson-hate-me syndrome. He wants to bond with Sean.


So Sean convinces him they should follow the coordinates of the message and possibly find the island.

The island coordinates is in the middle of a perpetual ocean storm and there are few options to getting there. The one option is a scared helicopter pilot named Gabato (Luis Guzman) who offers to fly Sean and Hank to the island for $3000. The $3000 would go toward sending his daughter Kailani (Vanessa Hudgens) to college.


Naturally, Sean takes to Kailani like a bee to pollen as they embark on they're trip.


After an extended period special effects the helicopter crash lands on the island with all the passengers in very good condition; but the helicopter destroyed. They are immediately greeted by a dinosaur, tiny elephants, huge bugs - small is big and big is small.


After a few more special effects, tehn meet up with Grandpa and plan their strategy to escape the island once they realise the island is sinking. Stop!

On the surface, "Journey 2" sound's like a decent film. Unfortunately, the trio of writers add several inane subplots that no amount of talent in the world could overcome. Clearly Payton is counting on the effects to mask the stupidity.


For the treatment given to the film, the director should have gone ahead and cast Brendon Frasier. The classic Verne tale is butchered for the prupose of cheap laughs.


"Journey 2: The Mysterious Island" is a childish, though action packed, butcher job on the Jules Vern clasic. However, the target audience is infact children and they seemed to enjoy the film, especially the tiny elephant. Adults though? Well at least women can watch The Rock pop his pecs! [sigh]   -- GEOFF BURTON