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“White House Down” Trailer Released, Fails to Restore Any Hopes

Roland Emmerich’s Washington-set thriller apparently blows up the Capitol along with the White House.

Iconic government buildings crumbling before our very eyes? Check. Cyberterrorists looking gleeful? Check. Abraham Lincoln quotes? Say what now?

The trailer for White House Down, which you may remember from our earlier posts as the other movie to be released this year in which America and her beloved buildings are attacked by inexplicably well-armed and well-organized terrorists, came out last night, and while it offers shamefully few clips of Channing Tatum in a tank top, it does give some clues as to what director Roland Emmerich (Independence Day, 2012) might have up his sleeve. The Capitol building is seen falling apart after an explosion while the world’s media freaks out. But wait! It was all a diversion, while presumably the real target is the President (Jamie Foxx), who’s sitting uncomfortably in the White House with no agents man enough to protect him.

You won’t get this from the trailer, but apparently the movie is one long audition for Tatum’s character, John McClane—sorry, Cale—a Capitol Police Officer who really wants to work for the President but can’t get on his team. That is, until he happens to be taking his daughter (Joey King) to visit the White House on the same day aliens—sorry, evil terrorists—attack.

Only briefly glimpsed in the trailer: Maggie Gyllenhaal, who we can only hope is as embarrassed to be in the movie as Morgan Freeman looked for the duration of Olympus Has Fallen. She plays a Secret Service agent alongside James Woods.

Other trailer highlights (and glean from these what facts you will): what looks like a missile hitting a plane, triage tents being set up on the Mall, the Oval Office in tatters, and the presidential limo crashing upside down into a swimming pool. Not shown: Channing Tatum’s ability to find a third facial expression. White House Down comes out July Fourth weekend. Happy birthday, America.

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