Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Releases May 22nd, 2015
2 hr 10 mins
Rated PG
Action/Adventure, Sci-Fi/Fantasy


Director: Brad Bird
Writer: Damon Lindelof, Brad Bird

George Clooney as Frank Walker
Thomas Robinson portrays a young Frank
Hugh Laurie as David Nix
Britt Robertson as Casey Newton
Raffey Cassidy as Athena
Tim McGraw as Eddie Newton
Kathryn Hahn as Ursula
Keegan-Michael Key as Hugo
Chris Baur as Frank's dad
Pierce Gagnon as Nate Newton
Matthew Maccaull as Dave Clark
Judy Greer as Jenny Newton
Garry Chalk as Jail Desk Jockey

Review by Stephen M.

Disney's Tomorrowland is a nice infomercial for Walt's dream of a Utopian future and his theme parks that reflects this.  Despite a rather slow pace for an adventure film, and a plot that is not quite all there, it is unfortunately, the best family film out or coming out.  The film led by veterans George Clooney as Frank Walker and Hugh Laurie as David Nix, are overshadowed by their younger female counterparts.

The story starts off with Frank Walker telling a story about his childhood where he comes to discover Tomorrowland.  Besides his story we also gets his fellow videographer's side, which is Casey Newton played by Britt Robertson.  Frank's story is cuter with less robot beheading, and flirtation between young kids.  But it is Casey's story that brings all the action and fills up most of the movie.  Casey receives a pin left to her unknowingly by Athena that gives her a glimpse into the other dimension as it used to be every time she touches it with her bare hands.  Casey driven to journey to Tomorrowland is connected to Frank by Athena.  Both actresses as I have said really were outstanding in their roles relative to the men of the film.  Another bright spot of the film is the futuristic technology shown in the film which to me was not featured enough.  From the cool construction robots to the Jetsons type flying vehicles, to the weaponry the ever smiling robots employ.

While there is a lot to like in the film, the Tomorrowland that Casey visits and subsequently revisits sure does look a lot like the Tomorrowland of Disney World.  From the jetpack rides, to the bath tub rocket ship, you can just visualize the potential of a future new ride at Disney World or Epcot.  From the product placement of Coca Cola (despite their relationship coming to an end in July) to Disney's It's a Small World Ride, the entire film has a familiar Disney feel to it.  Which if you are a fan of Disney, it isn't necessarily a bad thing.  What sets the film back for me is the slow pacing in the beginning, with a long build up to Tomorrowland to only find it quite not what you expect.

Overall, I would recommend the film but as a matinee.  The trailer showing the action scenes is quite misleading as the film for the most part is quite lacking.  There is more of an emphasis on relationships between several characters such as Carey, Frank and Athena.  The humor and action scenes that are there are great for teenagers and adults but may not be suitable for younger children despite its PG rating.  Jokes such as "powering down" may fly over the heads of younger kids as well as the fighting scenes in the collectibles shop and Frank's home may be too intense for them.  For a film that talks about the potential and future of mankind, it unfortunately fails to overwhelm me, but still makes for a good lazy morning watch on the big screen.


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