Scientists are really smart, but not everyone appreciates their genius, especially in  disaster movies. In fact, it wouldn't be a disaster movie if there wasn't at least one scientist who tries to warn everybody about the coming danger, but gets ignored. Usually the scientist is the hero. Here are eight particular scientists who could have saved a lot of problems if people had listened to them.

1. Jor-El (Man of Steel)
Jor-El (Russell Crowe), Man of Steel
When the planet Krypton starts doing strange things, only one person seems to notice the warning signs: Jor-El. In all versions of Superman's origin, Jor-El is the one person who knows the planet is going to blow up, but no one ever listens. He was the only one smart enough to build a spaceship and send his son to Earth.
If They Had Listened: If everyone had listened to Jor-El, the whole planet could have evacuated to Earth. Of course, then Earth would have been flooded with super-powered beings, and they probably would have taken over. So it’s kind of a good thing they didn't.

2. Jack Hall (Day After Tomorrow)
Jack Hall (Dennis Quaid), Source: Day After Tomorrow
When Earth's climate starts changing drastically, only one person seems to notice the warning signs: paleoclimatologist Jack Hall. Hall has some crazy theories about how global warming could cause another ice age, but the president and vice-president don't listen to him. Of course, the ice age immediately starts shortly afterwards.
If They Had Listened: Well, by the time Hall made his prediction, the ice age was due to start already. It would have taken years to reverse the trend, so Hall wouldn't have helped. But they could have started the evacuation to Mexico sooner.

3. Ira Kane (Evolution)
Ira Kane (David Duchovny); Source: Evolution
When a meteor crash lands in the desert, it spawns alien organisms that evolve rapidly into a new ecosystem. Seeing the danger, the army plans to bomb the crash site. Dr. Ira Kane tries to warn them that fire will only cause the creatures to rapidly evolve a defense, but they don't listen. Of course, the bombing has the effect he described.
If They Had Listened: They could have sent army helicopters equipped with Head and Shoulders to hose down the creatures before they ever got loose.

4. David Levinson (Independence Day)
David Levinson (Jeff Goldblum); Source: Independence Day

When an alien fleet arrives on Earth, only cable engineer David Levinson notices a mysterious signal being broadcast in our satellites. He tries to warn the White House, but by the time anyone listens, it's too late. The spaceships attack and most of Earth's monuments are destroyed. Oh yeah, and billions of people, too.
If They Had Listened: The army could have attacked the alien ships first, and the White House and the Empire State Building could have been saved.

5. Dr. Zarkov (Flash Gordon)
Dr. Hans Zarkov (Chaim Topol); Source: Flash Gordon

When Earth begins experiencing strange natural disasters, only Dr. Hans Zarkoff realizes they're being caused by an alien warlord who's moving the moon closer to Earth. He tried to warn NASA, but got fired for his trouble. Fortunately, he built a spaceship in his backyard (like you do) and forces football player Flash Gordon and journalist Dale Arden to come along to the planet Mongo.
If They Had Listened: The whole world could have launched a counterattack to save Earth, instead of leaving it in the hands of a football player. Of course, Flash handled it pretty well all by himself.

6. Carter Blake (Deep Blue Sea)
Carter Blake (Thomas Kane), Source: Deep Blue Sea

When a scientist researching Alzheimer's treatment needs bigger brains, she thinks it would be a good idea to make shark brains bigger. In the process, she creates a race of genetically engineered sharks with super-intelligence. Only shark wrangler Carter Blake figures out that maybe making sharks smarter isn't such a hot idea. Of course, he was right. The sharks figure out a way to escape and wreak havoc.
If They Had Listened: If they had listened to Carter, they would have killed all the sharks before they ever escaped, and all the people who got eaten would have survived.

7. Scientist (28 Days Later)
David Schneider (Scientist), Source: 28 Days Later
In this zombie movie, a group of animal activists try to release captive animals from a lab. One unnamed scientist begs them not to release a monkey infected with a virus that induces rage. Of course, the activists don't listen, and release the creature to infect the world.
If They Had Listened: That monkey could have stayed locked up, and the rage virus wouldn't have decimated the world's population. Let that be a lesson to you, kids. When a guy warns you not to release a monkey with an infectious disease, listen to him.

8. Joe Brody (Godzilla)
Joe Brody (Bryan Cranston); Source: Godzilla
When a Japanese nuclear power plant goes into meltdown due to unexplained tremors, plant supervisor Joe Brody loses his wife in the destruction. Years later, he's still obsessed with the accident and has become convinced the incident was not a natural disaster. He realizes mysterious signals are being causing by echolocation, and tries to warn the government that something is coming that will destroy Mankind. Unfortunately, he's ignored, and the prehistoric MUTOs arrive along with Godzilla to attack San Francisco.
If They Had Listened: The government could have just killed the MUTO they had in protective custody, and kept the other MUTO from attacking. But then we wouldn't have gotten to see the cool fights with Godzilla.

Which is your favorite ignored scientist? What other scientists should have been heard?

If you enjoyed this, then please use the buttons below to tell your friends about this post! Follow us! Email | RSSTwitter | Facebook


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Levinson did manage to warn the president. Ironically, Goldblum was also the scientist in Jurassic Park warning them things would go wrong.


I loved Cranston in Godzilla, he just needed more screen time. ;-(

Pat Dilloway said...

If they listened to him in "Deep Blue Sea" we would have been robbed of the awesome scene where Samuel L Jackson is gobbled by a shark mid-way through his "Win one for the Gipper" speech.

Tom Badguy said...

Doc Brown should be on this list. Back to the Future wasn't a disaster movie, but everyone should listen to him any way.


Subscribe to RSS Feed Follow me on Twitter!