Starring George Clooney, Hugh Laurie, Brit Robinson and Raffey Cassidy. Written by Brad Bird, Damon Lindelof, Jeff Jensen. Directed by Brad Bird. 130 minutes long.
In a world obsessed with the apocalypse and global warming, precocious late tween Casey Newton (Brit Robinson) dreams of going to the stars and loathes the fact that NASA are dismantling their last shuttle launch pad and commits acts of sabotage to stop them. Sadly her actions only result in seeing her arrested and distressing her, soon-to-be-out-of-work NASA engineer single-parent father. But when Casey discovers a mysterious pin (badge) that shows her the world of tomorrow she embarks on a journey to find her destiny, along the way teaming up with a curmudgeonly, scientifical old recluse, Frank Walker (George Clooney) and a strange young girl called Athena who knows more than she's letting on. After that it's a leisurely plod from one plot point to the next as Frank, Casey and Athena are chased by a black SUV full of grinning robots until our band of plucky heroes finally get to Tomorrowland and bicker with the baddy and his army of four henchmen and some cute-looking robots.
Because this is co written by Damon Lindelof, most of the dialogue consists of one character asking another a question which isn't answered and conversations where one character monologues uninterrupted for five minutes, before another says, 'What?'. Actually 'What' is the single most over-used word in this film or at least it seems that way. Characters say 'What' a lot in this film, usually before being told to shut up. This is one of those really irritating films that demands that no one answers a question up front. Characters know things that would help others but don't explain, waiting for the right moment, usually as it happens so it can be explained as it happens. Jesus, if everyone had just said it right off the bat, then we'd all have be home a good hour earlier.
This isn't all bad, the film looks great, it's beautifully directed and has one sequence that is just jaw-droppingly wonderful, sadly it's the in-film advert for Tomorrowland that blends a million perfect CGI effects into one seemingly single take and it looks utterly fantastic and I wish that had been the film rather than the doom-laden tale of woe that this is, a film with a message that is the world is seriously fucked unless you dreamers out there take-over the means of production and save the world.
You find yourself yearning to spend longer in the Tomorrowland we are given a glimpse of, even when it's the silent, near empty city it turns out to be. You want to explore it, to be amazed because it's the most amazing aspect of the film. Unfortunately this is a film with a serious message to impart, a message that must be given, look it's made by a serious director and writer who know how to save the world, you have to listen, they know how to save us all! It's up to you! Seriously!
Too many characters shriek, too many characters whine, too many characters bitch needlessly and there's the most pathetic fight I've ever seen that sees two 50 year old men, carefully roll about lightly slapping each other. This feels like one of those Disney films of the 70s in terms of peril and drama and lacks anything resembling a proper punch, more like a limp, slap to the shoulder.
Oh, how slightly disappointing.