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Tomorrowland


When TOMORROWLAND hit the theatres early in 2015, it did so with a bust, only grossing $93 million against a $190 million budget. It was quickly dismissed as a misfire.

It didn't make sense. With a surefire director in Brad Bird (Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol, The Incredibles) and a terrific screenwriter in Damon Lindelof (Lost, Star Trek: Into Darkness, Prometheus, World War Z) how did this go so wrong?


It didn't.


I shared America's group shrug at the film when it opened, and for my part, I was dead wrong.

Tomorrowland is an imaginative, exciting, fun and clever film with a terrific message.

The film opens is a perfect recreation of the 1965 Worlds Fair, where young Frank Walker (Thomas Robinson) enters his jet pack that almost works into an invention contest. While he doesn't win a ribbon, he meets a young girl named Athena (an excellent Raffey Cassidy) who soon whisks Frank away to another land.

Let's just say if "It's A Small World" was this exciting for every rider, it would be the first ride I stood in line for at the Magic Kingdom instead of the last.

The film moves forward to modern day, where rebellious but driven teenager Casey Newton (Britt Robertson) suddenly finds herself in possession of an orange Tomorrowland pin that transports her to another world whenever she touches it.

Her quest to learn more about this alternative dimension leads her to a now grown up Frank (George Clooney) who becomes a reluctant partner in her quest to get to Tomorrowland.

Hugh Laurie adds terrific presence and intelligent humor in his role as a leader in the other world and Keegan-Michael Key brings some laughs to the film.

The visual effects are first rate (see $190 million budget) and the cast is terrific from top to bottom.

Bird keeps things moving like a finely tuned action film, while Lindelof weaves in plenty of fun, mystery and suspense.

Clooney and Robertson are the core of the film and they are both very strong, linked by the strongest quest to connect to another world since Richard Dreyfuss built mountains out of mashed potatoes in his quest to get to Devil's Tower in "Close Encounters".

Disney fans will see plenty of nice inside references to everything from "The Black Hole" to Space Mountain being a key part of the landscape.

It's a shame that we all missed this in the theatres. There's no reason to make the same mistake now that it's available for home viewing.

Tomorrowland delivers an inspiring, hopeful message just beneath a rousing adventure film that soars like Michael Giacchino's always present music score. Go ahead, touch the pin.

Tomorrowland gets an A.

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