Tomorrowland: A World Beyond

Tommorrow Is Not So Far Away

Hey do remember Disney when you were growing up? You have some fond memories I’m sure. Apart from their iconic cartoons; my memory of Disney is uber child friendly films Herbie, Popeye, Homeward Bound or The Mighty Ducks.

You probably think that a lot of these same films are meh.. Not so good now you look back at them but there is still some sort of nostalgia there for them. At some point that changed for me. Perhaps it was me growing older but that backlog of iconic kids films seemed to die out.

Tomorrowland feels like one of these films that kids will absolutely remember. It has everything that kids could dream of I mean for a start it has jet packs that are there just for funsies!

The jet packs were invented by our sour and forlorn anti-hero Frank Walker (George Clooney). I only tend to like Clooney when he plays an underdog or a broken sort of character so I was pleased that Frank is grouchy and misanthropic which takes the edge off of Clooney’s punchable smarm – a good thing in my book.

Frank is cranky because one; he was kicked out of Tomorrowland and 2; He knows that something bad is going to happen to the earth and there is nothing he can do to fix it. In steps Casey Newton (Britt Robertson) our heroine who has a chance to avert this crisis.

Casey has been given a special Tomorrowland badge that allows her to see Tomorrowland when holding the badge. Intrigued she holds the badge and tries to walk towards the city. This part is actually quite amusing. Although she sees Tomorrowland she is still moving in the same space she was previously (in a room for example) so ends up bumping into all sort. The segment is cleverly done.

It’s here where we get to see Tomorrowland in all its glory. Tomorrowland feels like a documentary of a child’s imagination painted into the side of a giant jelly bean. Everything is clean, everything hovers, there are giant helper robots and swimming pools suspended in mid air, gaming visors and giant skyscrapers. It’s the best part of the film but it is also cruelly short.

You see Tommorrowland is a place where the brightest minds gather to make the most amazing things without the normal restrictions of finance and politics. It’s a utopia that allows people to do what they love as long as it serves a purpose. Such a riot of imagination is wildly enjoyable and really it’s the main reason you should see the film but there is so little on screen time of the workings of Tomorrowland that you leave feeling slightly disappointed. Perhaps they only gave a tantalising glimpse to set up a sequel but the ending doesn’t suggest a sequel is imminent.

Because the place is so free from the bindings of our social structure it is intentionally difficult to find. Frank is the only who knows how to get there so Casey has to persuade him to go back. Frank isn’t so willing to do this because he knows that Tomorrowland has changed.

Slight spoiler alert here so you may want to jump to the next paragraph. Tomorrowland has changed this much is obvious when Frank and Casey finally get in. The reason why it’s changed is bizarre though. Frank and Nix (Hugh Laurie) who is the head of Tomorrowland know that when the events on earth happen that they will be largely unaffected. If they knew, perhaps they let everyone else know that they are safe, perhaps not, in which case they assume they are safe. Yet when we get back to Tomorrowland most people have left and everything is looking run down… why?

Anyway, aside from that slight gripe there is an interesting question that is raised about whether we are on a self fulfilling prophecy to make things worse. We see so much negativity in the news with extremist attacks, war, famine, natural disasters and global warming the list goes on. Perhaps we actively crave this aspect of life to fulfill some carnal urge for destruction or perhaps just to make ourselves feel better that there are other people worse off. It’s quite a fascinating concept but is never really developed to its full potential.

Because of the above it’s not really a film for adults. It’s definitely watchable especially if you have mad it into adulthood with your imagination in check. However, If I was a kid again I think I would cherish this film. Would I look back in 10 years and think ‘meh’. Probably. But for today; tomorrow is magical. There’s just not enough.

Go See

  • Jet packs
  • Tomorrowland
  • ..with your kids

Avoid

  • Not enough tomorrow
  • If you are looking for an adults fantasy film
  • Plot inconsistencies

Overall

3-5-stars

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