This movie is my ultimate guilty pleasure. It's inane, manipulative, has hyperactive cutting, a ton of glaring inaccuracies (pointless to even discuss or debate), and probably 29 other glaring faults. And why in every dramatic slow-mo emo shot are there 3 helicopters flying in unison overhead? What's the point of having 3 helicopters flying really close together? Who cares! It looks cool. If one day I am having a heartfelt talk with my daughter, I hope there are 3 helicopters flying overhead to really 'bring it home' (and Aerosmith performing in the background.)
Despite it all, I still love watching this movie. Anytime it is on TV I can watch it 'til the end. Bruce Willis does a great job doing his Bruce Willis 'thing' (smart alecky tough guy), and the supporting cast is really great. Steve Buschemi in particular gets the best lines. An awesome assortment of ragtag castoffs (spitting funny one-liners) must save the world- who would have thunk it?
I think Armageddon was actually conceived by suits in a studio office (no really, I read that in a magazine), which is I guess another strike against it. Yet only a bunch of suits could come up with a 'high concept' like this (so high it's basically a parody by itself.) And only a director like Michael Bay could make it. He's far more suited to these types of movies, rather than big historical epics like PEARL HARBOR (which I really, really disliked.)
I read somewhere once that this movie is as close as Hollywood gets to pure cinema, in that it is basically completely divorced from reality of any kind. Is that good or bad? I don't know. I do think if you're going to ditch convention and any semblance to reality, you may as well go all the way. It's better than having something that is a confused mess that tries to be different things (Pearl Harbor.) There will be no 'it could really happen!' here.
So after all this, believe it or not I am going to give this movie a big fat whopping 8. Why? Because IMO it unabashedly succeeds at what it tries to set out to be, whatever that is. That makes no sense, since I am basically saying by all logical accounts this movie may actually suck, yet I am giving it a 8. But hey I loved this movie.