White House Down

Rated 2.0

A paramilitary gang led by a traitorous Secret Service agent (James Woods) storms the White House, killing and taking hostages, leaving only the president (Jamie Foxx) and a feckless Capitol police officer (Channing Tatum) to save the last best hope of Earth. Writer James Vanderbilt and director Roland Emmerich follow Marx's principle on history repeating itself—first time as tragedy, second time as farce—by turning September 11, 2001, into a rolicking action comedy, with odd couple Tatum and Foxx as the buddy-heroes at the center of all the fun. Since this is not a terrorist strike but an inside job, the movie also evokes distant memories of 1964's Seven Days in May and its attempted bloodless coup—this time, of course, there's a lot more blood. Shame on you if you can't guess who's behind it all.