The necessary and inevitable nature of destructo-porn, apart from top-tier VFX, is to improve upon the scale and savagery of the last big one — i.e., seriously budgeted, major U.S. distributor, mid-level or starting-to-fade stars holding their noses. Roland Emmerich‘s 2012, which ran 158 minutes, popped five years ago. San Andreas (Warner Bros., 5.29) was costly to make but not super-costly (i.e., $100 million) and was directed by Brad Peyton, whose last two films were Cats and Dogs: The Revenge of Kitty Galore (’10) and Journey 2: The Mysterious Island, which nobody with a smidgen of taste gave a shit about and which grossed $326 million worldwide. Paul Giamatti signs the contract, delivers the lines, cashes the check. Dwayne Johnson, Carla Gugino, Kylie Minogue, Ioan Gruffudd, etc.