A Jake Gyllenhaal Disaster Is Trending On Netflix

A Jake Gyllenhaal movie is trending on Netflix right now and though it wasn't a critical darling, it's worth a watch now years later

By Doug Norrie | Published

jake gyllenhaal

Disaster movies will never get old. It seems folks just love to watch a version of Earth going to pot quicker than the version they actually live on. In this way, these kinds of flicks, or the genre as a whole, will likely have staying power right up until the point our little blue orb goes kaput itself. And right now Jake Gyllenhaal has one of these films trending on Netflix where it’s been steadily moving up the streaming charts. The Day After Tomorrow is sitting at number eight on the streamer and could still move up the ranks this week. It’s worth checking out Jake Gyllenhaal in this one as the world faces, well, the end of days.

In The Day After Tomorrow, we get a young Jake Gyllenhaal who is about to experience something we’d have thought was totally impossible based on all other available metrics about our climate trajectory. It’s going to be time for another Ice Age and he’s about to experience the whole thing firsthand. Gyllenhaal plays Sam Hall, an industrious high school student visiting New York City for an academic competition. He’s the son of paleoclimatologist Jack Hall who’s made some interesting findings and has some dire warnings about the state of the world. The dude has found evidence that there’s going to be another Ice Age, and it’s coming way quicker than anyone would have thought.

Basically, what happens is a “perfect storm” of sorts goes down with multiple massive weather anomalies contributing to the Northern Hemisphere of the world pretty quickly hitting subarctic temperatures and leaving everyone scrambling for how to get safe. As with any good disaster film, we have multiple storylines going on at once as different people try to warn the higher-ups, while others, like Jake Gyllenhaal and his friends, scramble to find an iconic place like the New York City Public Library to take refuge before everything gets a bit too chilly. Check out Jake Gyllenhaal in the trailer for The Day After Tomorrow.

See what I mean? Jake Gyllenhaal and company are dealing with a lot here and it doesn’t look like things have many ways to get better. Tornadoes, tsunamis, flash freezes, it’s all there from a disaster perspective with multiple iconic landmarks getting swallowed up, another hallmark of the disaster movie genre. They are playing with all the right beats and checking all the right boxes for this bad boy.

Joining Jake Gyllenhaal in The Day After Tomorrow are some other notables rounding out the cast. Dennis Quaid plays Jack Hall, the scientist father who was the first one to figure out that the world is headed for some not-so-great outcomes. We also have Emmy Rossum as Sam’s friend Laura, and Ian Holm as another climate scientist. Others include Austin Nichols, Sela Ward, Arjay Smith, and Dash Mihok. 

Roland Emmerich was at the helm of The Day After Tomorrow, both writing and directing. And this dude knows a little something about putting these kinds of movies together. He’s become something of a master of disaster over the years. Other flicks in this vein include Independence Day, Godzilla, 2012, White House Down, Independence Day: Resurgence, and this year’s Moonfall. Though this was his only time working with Jake Gyllenhaal, he’s been known for putting out this kind of ridiculous though engaging flick.

The Day After Tomorrow was a moderate hit for Jake Gyllenhaal and company at the box office where is earned a little north of $550 million when it first came out in 2004. That was on a $125 million budget. So in terms of return, this is acceptable for a major studio though not exactly overwhelming. And critics were only sort of on board with what was happening here. The 45% Rotten Tomatoes score finished well-below average and folks mostly thought the flick’s premise was silly and execution average at best. But in terms of catching up with it about two decades later? Well, these kinds of movies can still play, especially if going in with lower expectations.

So go check out Jake Gyllenhaal in The Day After Tomorrow on Netflix and see if it lines up with your vision of the end of the world. Think we are in for the deep freeze or is there another way this whole thing ends up playing out?