FILM REVIEW – TOMORROWLAND: A WORLD BEYOND

Sometimes you just hope that a film lives up to its potential and Tomorrowland A World Beyond is one of those films that you want to believe lives up to that hope.

Bound by a shared destiny, a bright, optimistic teen bursting with scientific curiosity and a former boy-genius inventor jaded by disillusionment embark on a danger-filled mission to unearth the secrets of an enigmatic place somewhere in time and space that exists in their collective memory as Tomorrowland.

What they must do there changes the world—and them—forever. Featuring a screenplay by Brad Bird and Lost writer and co-creator Damon Lindelof, from a story by Lindelof & Jeff Jensen and Bird, Tomorrowland promises to take audiences on a thrill ride of nonstop adventures through new dimensions that have only been dreamed of.

Tomorrowland A World Beyond is a hopeful film. It talks about hope and gives you hope. It is a message that sometimes  works and at other times falls flat. This time I pleased to say that Tomorrowland gives us hope that we can still be surprised and engaged about the journey of the film and not just the ending.

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The story covers two time periods which are the mid-sixties and today but the way these time periods intertwine and unfold onscreen is pure pleasure. You are invested in the story from the outset as you are swept away on a constantly surprising magical mystery tour. The story is hard to discuss without giving too much away too much of the plot but suffice to say that not all is as it seems. If there is a message to be found within the film it is that is all about the journey and not the destination. We get to see Tomorrowland at various stages of its development along with the characters so you feel that the two are linked.

The cast includes some new and established actors including Britt Robertson who plays Casey Newton, a young student who is a dreamer and is trying to help her dad not lose his job. Robertson does an excellent job of taking us on her journey to uncover the secrets of Tomorrowland. Hugh Laurie brings a solid, if slightly stiff performance, but that is in keeping with his character of Nix, a resident of Tomorrowland. Raffey Cassidy is a young actress to keep an eye on. Her perfect performance  will have you hoping for the future we want just as much as her character Athena does. Rounding out the main cast is George Clooney who gives us a subtle and underrated performance that builds as the film progresses. Playing the role of Frank Walker, Clooney shows us a man possessed, in love, hopeful and without hope which is a joy to watch.

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The film is not an action flick but it does have some great action scenes in it including a totally crazy fight scene in a toy and hobby store that has so many in jokes your head will hurt afterwards.

You can see from Director Brad Bird’s resume, which includes one of my favourite films of all time The Iron Giant, that he loves his films and cares about story. This is most evident in Tomorrowland. Here he used some familiar scenes from Iron Giant to great effect. The pacing of the story is perfect with the visuals and scenery a joy to behold. Add in the music by Michael Giacchino and you have a perfect cinema experience.

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The visual effects of Tomorrowland are stunning and very well realised using both practical and CGI effects to create a blended masterpiece. For this reason I would recommend seeing this in IMAX 3D to get more for your money.

The only thing that lets the film down is the fight scene at the end which just feels a bit cheaper than the rest of the film and slightly out of place. It is almost as if it the sequence was rushed due to time constraints and tagged on.

So overall a excellent film that is all about the journey and hope and which delivers on it’s promise. A bit schmaltzy but well worth it.

See the trailer below and for a really cool trip follow this link and explore.

Rating: 4/5

Reviewer: Montoya

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