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Dante's Peak

Film poster for Dante's Peak
Directed by Roger Donaldson
Produced by Gale Anne Hurd
Joseph Singer
Ilona Herzberg
Written by Leslie Bohem
Starring Pierce Brosnan
Linda Hamilton
Charles Hallahan
Jamie Renée Smith
Jeremy Foley
Grant Heslov
Music by James Newton Howard
John Frizzell
Cinematography Andrzej Bartkowiak
Editing by Conrad Buff
Tina Hirsch
Howard Smith
Distributed by Universal Pictures
Release date(s) February 7, 1997
Running time 109 min.
Language English
Budget $116,000,000 US
Gross revenue Domestic:
$67,127,760
Foreign:
$111,000,000
Worldwide:
$178,127,760[1]

Dante's Peak is a 1997 disaster film starring Pierce Brosnan and Linda Hamilton. It portrays the effect of a volcano erupting in a small town in the Pacific Northwest portion of the United States. It was released a few months before Volcano and eventually received wider success.[2] It has also been acclaimed for its relative scientific accuracy, which Volcano lacked.[3]

Contents

Plot

Set in the fictional town of Dante's Peak, Washington, located in the northern Cascade Mountains, the film is somewhat based on the real-life eruptions of Mount St. Helens in 1980 and Mount Pinatubo in 1991. The film begins with the eruption of an unnamed volcano in Colombia during which volcanologist Dr. Harry Dalton’s (Brosnan) fiancée (Walker Brandt) is killed as the couple tries to evacuate.

Four years later, Harry is tasked with investigating possible volcanic activity in the Northern Cascades near the town of Dante's Peak. Later, two backpackers (David Lipper & Heather Stephens) are skinny dipping in a hot spring when the water begins to boil, killing the couple. In Dante's Peak, the town is receiving an award for being "The second most desirable place to live in the United States, population under 20,000" and celebrating its annual "Pioneer Days Festival". Harry meets with mayor Rachel Wando (Hamilton) who, along with her children, Graham (Foley) and Lauren (Smith), accompanies Harry to the mountain's "high lake" to check the water’s acidity. After checking the acidity and picking up the mayor's ex-mother in law, Ruth (Hoffman), the five of them head to the town's hot springs where they discover the bodies of the two dead backpackers.

Harry calls a town meeting to discuss putting the town on alert during which Dalton's boss, Dr. Paul Dreyfus (Charles Hallahan), decides against the alert. Despite strongly opposing the decision, Harry remains in the town to help Dreyfus and his USGS crew Greg, Terry, Nancy, and Stan (Heslov, Trutner, Field, and Ma) evaluate the mountain. After the town's water supply becomes sulphuric due to the acidity of the mountain breaching the town's springs, Harry and Dreyfus decide to evacuate the town.

During the town meeting alerting the citizens to evacuate, the eruption begins, causing a stampede. Earthquakes begin destroying the town and the main bridge leading out of town collapses, causing chaos.

Meanwhile, the mayor's children steal her car and drive it up the mountain to Ruth’s cabin in hopes of evacuating her. As the eruption continues, the USGS crew prepares to leave while Harry and Rachel head up the mountain after the children, to find Ruth refusing to leave. Down in the town, the mountain has expelled large amounts of ash and most residents have been killed or have escaped.

As Harry and Rachel argue with Ruth for her to come with them, a lava flow engulfs all three cars and parts of the house. The five of them flee to the nearby lake and take a metal boat across the river. It becomes apparent that the lake has turned to sulphuric acid and is eating through the metal boat. As they near the shore the boat's motor fails and Ruth jumps off to pull it along to the pier before it sinks despite the acidity. She wades through the acidic water screaming, but dragging the boat along to try and save the rest of them. After they reach the shore the five of them head down the mountain towards the town.

As the USGS crew is evacuated by the military a USGS vehicle, driven by Dreyfus, is washed away when a bridge fails while further up the mountain Ruth dies from her injuries. At a ranger station, Harry hot wires a truck and drives the family down the mountain. When they arrive at the USGS operations center in the town, Harry realises that the mountain is about to experience a catastrophic eruption. As he leaves, he picks up a tracking device on loan from NASA.

Back to the truck, he heads towards the town's mines as Dante's Peak finally explodes and a giant pyroclastic cloud engulfs the town. The truck makes it safely into the mine but the town is destroyed, leading the USGS crew to believe Harry has been killed. Inside the mine, Graham leads the way, as most of the abandoned mines serve as a hideout for him and his friends, and shows the survivors all of his supplies. Remembering that he left the tracking device in the truck, Harry leaves to activate it. While in the truck, Harry is injured and trapped by falling rocks and has to reach the tracking device without causing a fatal cave-in. Eventually he reaches it and activates it. The device flashes for "one or two days" before the four are rescued from the mine.

After being rescued from the mine, Harry meets the rest of his crew, who tells him that Dreyfus didn't make it. On board a helicopter, Graham asks Harry if he really meant what he said in the mine about taking the family fishing and Harry confirms it with the words, "Sure did." He and Rachel clasp hands and kiss and Harry tells the helicopter pilot that they are ready to go.

Cast

Production

Reception

Despite having wider success, and being slightly more scientifically accurate, than Volcano, Dante's Peak too opened to unfavourable reviews, and holds a 29% rating at RottenTomatoes.com, ironically lower than that of Volcano's.[4] During its opening weekend, it grossed $18,479,435 USD on 2,657 screens, and ultimately grossed $67,155,742 USD, far short of its $116,000,000 budget. However, the film broke even thanks to a strong international campaign that saved the film from a total financial loss and has since grown to obtain a cult status.

See also

References

External links

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Dante's Peak
File:Dantes peak
Film poster for Dante's Peak
Directed by Roger Donaldson
Produced by Gale Anne Hurd
Joseph Singer
Ilona Herzberg
Written by Leslie Bohem
Starring Pierce Brosnan
Linda Hamilton
Charles Hallahan
Elizabeth Hoffman
Jamie Renée Smith
Jeremy Foley
Grant Heslov
Music by James Newton Howard
John Frizzell
Cinematography Andrzej Bartkowiak
Editing by Conrad Buff
Tina Hirsch
Howard Smith
Distributed by Universal Pictures
Release date(s) February 7, 1997
Running time 109 min.
Language English
Budget $116,000,000 US
Gross revenue Domestic:
$67,127,760
Foreign:
$111,000,000
Worldwide:
$178,127,760[1]

Dante's Peak is a 1997 disaster film directed by Roger Donaldson, written by Leslie Bohem, and starring Pierce Brosnan, Linda Hamilton and Charles Hallahan. The film portrays the effect of a volcano erupting near a small town in the Pacific Northwest region of the United States. It was released a few months before Volcano and eventually received wider success.[2] It has also been recognized for being more scientifically accurate than Volcano,[3] despite gaining lower ratings.

Contents

Plot

Set in the fictional town of Dante's Peak, Washington, located in the northern Cascade Mountains, the film is somewhat based on the real-life eruptions of Mount St. Helens in 1980 and Mount Pinatubo in 1991. The film begins with the eruption of an unnamed volcano in Colombia during which volcanologist Dr. Harry Dalton’s (Brosnan) fiancée (Walker Brandt) is killed as the couple tries to evacuate.

Four years later, Harry is tasked with investigating possible volcanic activity in the Northern Cascades mountain near the town of Dante's Peak, which had not erupted for 7000 years. Later, two backpackers (David Lipper & Heather Stephens) are skinny dipping in a hot spring when the water begins to boil, killing the couple. In Dante's Peak, the town is receiving an award for being "The second most desirable place to live in the United States, population under 20,000" and celebrating its annual "Pioneer Days Festival". Harry meets with mayor Rachel Wando (Hamilton) who, along with her children, Graham (Foley) and Lauren (Smith), accompanies Harry to the mountain's "high lake" to check the water’s acidity. After checking the acidity and picking up the mayor's ex-mother in law, Ruth (Hoffman), the five of them head to the town's hot springs where they discover the bodies of the two dead backpackers, and Harry saves Graham's life by stopping him from jumping in the spring just in the nick of time.

Harry calls a town meeting to discuss putting the town on alert during which his boss, Dr. Paul Dreyfus (Charles Hallahan), decides against the alert. Despite strongly opposing the decision, Harry remains in the town to help Paul and the USGS crew Greg, Terry, Nancy, and Stan (Heslov, Trutner, Field, and Ma) evaluate the mountain. After the town's water supply becomes sulphuric due to the acidity of the mountain breaching the town's springs, Harry and Paul decide to evacuate the town.

During the town meeting alerting the citizens to evacuate, the eruption begins, causing a stampede. Earthquakes begin destroying the town and the main freeway leading out of town collapses, causing chaos.

Meanwhile, the mayor's children steal her car and drive it up the mountain to Ruth’s cabin in hopes of evacuating her. As the eruption continues, the USGS crew prepares to leave while Harry and Rachel head up the mountain after the children, to find Ruth refusing to leave. Down in the town, the mountain has expelled large amounts of ash and most residents have escaped.

As Harry and Rachel argue with Ruth for her to come with them, a lava flow engulfs all three cars and parts of the house. The five of them flee to the nearby lake and take a metal boat across the river. It becomes apparent that the lake has turned to sulphuric acid and is eating through the metal boat. As they near the shore the boat's motor fails. Ruth, realizing that the boat will not make it, jumps out to pull it along to the pier before it sinks. She wades through the acidic water screaming, but dragging the boat along to try and save the rest of them. After they reach the shore the five of them head down the mountain towards the town.

The USGS crew, meanwhile, is evacuated by the National Guard. Paul drives the USGS van, while the other four ride in Humvees. The Humvees make across the failing bridge, but Paul cannot and is washed away in a lahar. Further up the mountain, Ruth and Rachel reconcile before Ruth dies from her injuries. At a ranger station, Harry hot wires a truck and drives the family down the mountain. When they arrive at the USGS operations center in the town, Harry realizes that the mountain is about to experience a catastrophic eruption. As he leaves, he picks up E.L.F. (Extreme Low Frequency), a tracking device designed by NASA.

Back in the truck, he and the family seek safe haven in the town's abandoned mines (ironically, Rachel had grounded Graham near the beginning of the movie for being in the mines, saying that they were "too dangerous") as Dante's Peak finally explodes and a giant pyroclastic cloud engulfs the town. The truck makes it safely into the mine but the town is destroyed, leading the USGS crew to believe Harry has been killed. (One piece of film footage from this sequence is apparently so realistic that it has made it's way into more than one documentary about actual volcanic eruptions.) Inside the mine, Graham leads the way, as most of the abandoned mines served as a hideout for him and his friends, and shows the survivors all of his supplies. Remembering that he left E.L.F. in the truck, Harry leaves to activate it. While in the truck, Harry is injured and trapped by falling rocks and has to reach the tracking device without causing a fatal cave-in. Eventually he reaches it and activates it. The device flashes for "one or two days" before the four are rescued from the mine.

After being rescued from the mine, Harry meets the rest of his crew, who tells him that Paul didn't make it. On board a helicopter, Graham asks Harry if he really meant what he said in the mine about taking the family fishing and Harry confirms it with the words, "Sure did." He and Rachel clasp hands and kiss and Harry tells the helicopter pilot that they are ready to go, and they fly off.

Meanwhile, as the credits begin rolling, the camera pans across the ruins of the town before finally resting on the Dante's Peak volcano, now reduced to a menacing Mt. St. Helens-like horseshoe-shaped caldera, as the sun rises beside it.

Cast

Locations

Agua Dulce, California, USA

Baker Hot Springs, Mount Baker National Forest, Washington, USA

Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument, Washington, USA (establishing shots)

Wallace, Idaho, USA (town exteriors)[4]

Production

Reception

Despite having wider success, and being slightly more scientifically accurate than Volcano, Dante's Peak opened to more unfavourable reviews than its rival, and holds a 27% rating at RottenTomatoes.com.[5] During its opening weekend, it grossed $18,479,435 USD on 2,657 screens, and ultimately grossed $67,155,742 USD, far short of its $116,000,000 budget. However, the film broke even thanks to a strong international campaign that saved the film from a total financial loss and it eventually grossed $178,127,760,[1] making it more financially successful than Volcano, which grossed $122,823,468.[5]

See also

References

External links


Quotes

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikiquote

Dante's Peak is a 1997 action-adventure film about the effects of a volcano erupting in a small town in the Northern Cascades.

Written by Leslie Bohem and directed by Roger Donaldson.
Whatever you do, don't look back! Taglines

Contents

Harry Dalton

  • Paul, I think we should monitor the entire area. Get the whole shooting match in here. I don't know, but the acidity in the lake is high enough to bother me. There's enough carbon dioxide coming out of the soil to start killing trees and wildlife…Paul. Paul, you sent me up here to check. I'm doing that. I think attention should be paid.
  • I've always been better at figuring out volcanoes than people & politics.
  • This rig can take it. The engine's got a snorkel.
  • [While attempting to outrun the pyroclastic cloud] Oh, my God! Don't look back, kids! Don't look back!
  • When we get out of here… and we will get out of here…what do you say we go down to Florida, we get ourselves a boat, and we stock it with all the nicest, yummiest things…we can possibly get our hands on, and we go out there and we catch ourselves a big, old, fat fish?

Rachel Wando

  • I'd like to thank Karen from Money magazine for this wonderful award. It's…oh, what is it, Lauren, is it Karen or Kathy?
  • Thank you, Karen. Thank you, Lauren. This award means a lot to us. We've been proud of our town for a long time. It's beautiful. It's safe. It's a wonderful place in which to raise a family. And now with the prospect of a major investment in our economic future…by Mr. Elliot Blair of Blair Industries…Will you stand up, Elliot? Next year we're gonna be number one.
  • A man who stares at a rock must have a lot on his mind. Or nothing.
  • Fun is what you have when you don't have two children, a business, and a town to run.
  • Eight years it took us to get this town on its feet. You wouldn't believe the struggle.

Others

  • Paul Dreyfus: How about a nice adult beverage?
  • Greg: [seeing Rachel get out of her car with the coffees] Yes! It's coffee time! Coffee! Coffee, coffee, coffee, coffee! Cappuccino! Java! Yes!
  • Harry: This little puppy's called Spider Legs. She goes in when it's too dangerous for us. Boldly goes, I might add.
  • Terry: You guys see this? Do you see this? I expect apologies and six-packs from each one of ya.
  • Paul: That's Terry's answer to everything. Kick it if it doesn't work.
  • Sheriff Turner: Attention all citizens. There will be a meeting held…in the high school gymnasium at 6 PM to discuss the evacuation of Dante's Peak. To repeat: All citizens are urged to attend the meeting…that will be held in the high school gymnasium…
  • Nancy: Why look at computers when you can look at the real thing?
  • Sheriff: Boy, you're a sight for sore eyes. Lieutenant, I want you to take your men, sweep every building in town, top to bottom.

Dialogue

  • Harry: Any idea where I might find Mayor Wando?
  • Cluster: She should be right around the corner, accepting some award. Dante's Peak was just named the best…well, the second-best place to live…in the United States, population under 20,000.
  • Harry: Good for you. What was number one?
  • Cluster: I don't know. Some piece of crap town out in Montana. Who cares?

  • Karen: Thank you. Thank you very much, Les. Mayor Wando, it gives me great pleasure to present to you…a Money magazine award: Dante's Peak, the second most desirable place to live in the United States, population under 20,000. Congratulations.
  • Rachel: Thank you…
  • Lauren: It's Karen!
  • Rachel: Thank you, Karen. Thank you, Lauren. This award means a lot to us. We've been proud of our town for a long time. It's beautiful. It's safe. It's a wonderful place in which to raise a family. And now with the prospect of a major investment in our economic future…by Mr. Elliot Blair of Blair Industries…Will you stand up, Elliot? Next year we're gonna be number one.

  • Ruth: Hi, Rachel…You Rachel's boyfriend?
  • Harry: Uh, no, no. Harry Dalton, United States Geological Survey. Just up here to check on your mountain. That's all.
  • Ruth: Bunch of you people came up here right after Mount St. Helens went nuts. There was nothing going on then. There's nothing going on here now.
  • Harry: Yes, well, um…
  • Rachel: I need to take Dr. Dalton up to the high lake and wondered if the kids could stay here for a little while.
  • Ruth: Sure. But why don't we all go? We can go swimming.
  • Lauren: Yeah!
  • Ruth: Mess around in the hot springs on the way back.

  • Sheriff: I thought this was supposed to be an extinct volcano.
  • Harry: Not extinct, just dormant…as in sleeping. And your volcano might just be waking up.
  • Les: You're talking about the evacuation of 7,400 people. You don't think that's extreme?
  • Harry: All I'm talking about…is you consider alerting the town to the possibility of an evacuation.
  • Les: What Mr. Dalton here doesn't realize…is that if Elliot Blair gets the idea there is some kind of problem here, he's gonna take his $18 million, his 800 jobs, and he's gonna evacuate.
  • Jane Fox: Les, two people are dead, and we don't know…
  • Les: This is the first time in 4 years that we have the opportunity…
  • Rachel: Look, look! It's been a very long day. Let's try to treat each other nicely. Norman, why don't you pull out the town's emergency evacuation plans? We should at least have a look at them.
  • Norman: If I can find them.

  • Stan: Look at this nice little town. Nestled all snug and cozy right against the mountain.
  • Nancy: Yeah, just like Pompeii.

  • Rachel: How about you, you ever been married?
  • Harry: No, never.
  • Rachel: Why not?
  • Harry: Well, for one thing, I move around a lot. Colombia, Guatemala, the Philippines, Mexico, New Zealand, New Guinea. Wherever there's a volcano with an attitude. …Makes it hard to settle down.
  • Rachel: You ever come close?
  • Harry: Yes…Once…
  • Rachel: Touchy subject.
  • Harry: Her name was Marianne. We worked together. She loved volcanoes…Fascinated by them…Loved the life…4 years ago, a volcano erupted in Colombia. Marianne and I thought we had enough time to get out. Unfortunately, we were wrong. We got too close to the show. Marianne was killed. If this thing blows, and if she does a Mount St. Helens, the blast will get here within a minute.
  • Rachel: Well, I hope you're wrong about our volcano, Harry. But if not, I'm glad you're here.

  • Terry: I'm okay. My doc says I can leave as soon as they make sure my head's okay.
  • Nancy: Okay. See ya in ten years then.
  • Terry: Ow. Ow.
  • Nancy: I think Spider Legs was just…getting even with you for all those kicks in the butt you gave it!

  • Harry: Paul! I've got that scientific evidence you need.
  • Paul: Harry, what are you doing?
  • Harry: [fills a glass with sulfur-contaminated water] I've just come from the town's water supply. It's the same.
  • Paul: Oh, my God.

[Graham and Lauren steal Rachel's car to drive up the mountain to save their grandmother]

  • Graham: I can't see through the ash.
  • Lauren: Maybe you ought to turn the lights on.
  • Graham: They are on.
  • Lauren: Make the windshield wipers go faster?
  • Graham: I don't know how.
  • Lauren: It's that thing there.
  • Graham: Don't touch things! You're gonna mess something up.
  • Lauren: Like what?
  • Graham: I don't know. Something!

  • Nancy: Uh-oh. Looks like our asshole pilot plans on flying people outta here.
  • Paul: If he gets any of that ash sucked up into his engine, he's had it.
  • Cluster: He's gettin' $15,000 bucks cold cash.
  • Paul: Wait! Wait! Wait! Wait! Wait! No, no, no! Wait! Wait! Stop! Stop! Stop! [the helicopter takes off]

  • Greg: We've had plenty of minor eruptions. Maybe we're over the hump.
  • Stan: Yeah, I hope.
  • Nancy: Get real, Beavis. She's just clearing her throat. She hasn't even started to sing yet.

  • Harry, Rachel, Graham, Lauren, and Ruth [singing while sailing across the acidic lake]: Row, row, row your boat gently down the stream…Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily…Life is but a dream… Row, row, row your boat gently down the stream…Merrily, merrily…Row, row, row your boat…Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily…Row, row, row your boat…Life is but a dream…Gently down the stream…Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily…Life is but a dream…Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily…Life is but a dream…Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily…Life is but a dream…Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily…

  • Rachel: Oh, God, Ruth. I'm so sorry for what I said to you up there. I really didn't mean it. I just…
  • Ruth: You're right what you said. I am a fool.
  • Rachel: No, you're not.
  • Ruth: My son's the biggest fool of all. He never should've run off and hurt you all like that.
  • Rachel: If anybody's a fool, Ruth, it's me, 'cause I don't think I ever really gave you a chance.
  • Graham: Hang on, Grandma. It's just another two miles to the ranger station.
  • Ruth: I don't think I have another two miles left in me, Ace.

  • Harry: Come here. Come here. Just sit down a second. Sit down a second. All right, listen, now. Have you ever been deep-sea fishing?
  • Graham: No.
  • Harry: Good. Neither have I. So, when we get out of here… and we will get out of here…what do you say we go down to Florida, we get ourselves a boat, and we stock it with all the nicest, yummiest things…we can possibly get our hands on, and we go out there and we catch ourselves a big, old, fat fish? …Hmm? Does that sound good?
  • Rachel: It sounds good, Harry.
  • Graham: Yeah, Harry, it sounds great.

  • Graham: Did you really mean what you said about taking us fishing?
  • Harry: I sure did.
  • Lauren: That's great.
  • Soldier: You guys ready to go?
  • Harry: Let's go.

Taglines

  • The pressure is building.
  • Whatever you do, don't look back!
  • Without warning, day becomes night, air turns to fire, and solid ground gives way to white-hot, molten terror.

External Links

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