Tomorrowland (aka Project T) (5/10)


Imagine a world where nothing is impossible.


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."

Title Tomorrowland
Director Brad Bird
Director of Photography Claudio Miranda
Runtime 2 h 10 min
Certification PG
Release Date 22 May 2015
Tagline Imagine a world where nothing is impossible.
IMDb Id tt1964418

Tomorrowland is not a well-known movie in The Netherlands. Disney was sued by the promotor of the Tomorrowland Music Festival, as they own the trademark of the name Tomorrowland in the Benelux. The promotor was not willing to find a compromise with Disney, because when they launched the Tomorrowland Festival in the USA a number of years ago, Disney sued them over using that name and they had to rebrand the festival… to ‘TomorrowWorld’. So now it was Disney’s turn to give in and they had to rebrand the movie, and it was released here under the somewhat vague title ‘Project T’.

But back to the movie. A girl Casey (an ever-hopeful Britt Robertson) finds a pin, which upon touching it seems to take her instantaniously to a magical place – a place designed by the best scientists and engineers on the planet, a place where the future seems as bright as can be. Indeed: that place is Tomorrowland.

As it turns out however – not all is well in Tomorrowland after all… Can Casey save the day, and with the help of Frank (a tired looking George Clooney) beat the villainous David Nix (a somewhat uninspired Hugh Laurie)?

In classic Disney tradition, it is a movie about not giving up and seeing the good guys prevail. Maybe less classic Disney is the amount of violence in what really should be seen as a kids movie. But to be fair, there is no real bloodshed as most or all of the violence is aimed at robots.

The first act is pretty good – it sets out the players, introduces Tomorrowland, and keeps you guessing where it is all going – in a good way.

The middle section wears a bit thin after a while. When it becomes clear that Tomorrowland isn’t what it once was intended to be, instead of deepening the sense of despair or angst or danger, it keeps this constant tone of hope and promise – but not in a good way. At one point especially the chirpiness of the score really started bugging me.

And the final act is just a bit mweh. I guess I sort of had given in to my disappointment in the movie by then.

There are lots of fun elements – for small and big kids alike – jetpacks, robots, multidimensional travel,   gadgets galore… , but the essence of the plot is maybe a bit too ‘naive’: we can change the future and save the world with some good ol’ American Hope and Optimism. Ok then… Oh and killing stacks of smiling robots along the way also helps apparently.

So just take this movie as a kids action movie, more in the vein of ‘Spy Kids’ – forget the plot, look at the gadgets and action! – and then it sort of holds up ‘ok’.

I give it a generous 5/10 with that in mind.

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