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Tomorrowland is good. I would stop short of calling it a great movie – the pacing is a little off in the middle, which made it seem longer than its two hour, ten minute running time – but I enjoyed it, and I recommend that you see it on an IMAX screen if at all possible. The visuals are just stunning. There are a few plot holes here and there, but I blame those on Damon Lindelof’s involvement with the script (yes I’m still mad about Lost.)
Tomorrowland is a magical sci-fi movie about a girl named Casey, who gets the chance to go to Tomorrowland, a futuristic place where the brightest minds are trying to do amazing things. But something has gone awry, and Casey might just be able to save the world – if she can convince a cranky George Clooney to help her.
Britt Robertson is wonderful as Casey. If I were writing this review a few decades ago I wouldn’t be able to escape describing her as “spunky.” She rides motorcycles, solves problems, and doesn’t take no for an answer. She also acts like a teenager in an unusual situation, not a superhero who was just waiting for a chance to show her powers. I like that. Plus, she’s the hero – she’s looking to solve problems, not get rescued. I like that too.
While the acting is superb all around (especially from Clooney playing Frank Walker, a bitter genius), it’s the messages of the movie that really got under my skin: One person can make a difference, and we should never resign ourselves to our fate.
I’ve never believed in fate. Sure, luck and circumstance put some people in a better position to control how their story plays out, but we all have to keep trying. And Casey does keep trying, despite bitter middle-aged men and murderous robots and incredible odds.
Unfortunately, after an exciting, mystery-filled beginning, and before the action-packed ending, the movie loses its way a bit as Casey tries to get to Tomorrowland. I feel like a good fifteen minutes (at least) could have been cut from the middle third of the movie without hurting anything.
The ending did have me crying, and the movie has stayed with me. My son wasn’t able to attend the screening I went to, and I don’t mind seeing it again with him. I think 8-13 is the sweet spot for this movie, although the younger kids might get a bit bored during some of the more talky scenes about the science-y stuff. Not to imply that kids are bored by science; I love science, but I was a bit bored during some of those conversations. A lot of what is happening is left unexplained, and what is explained is sometimes explained in a very boring way, but you just have to kind-of go with it. (Again, Lost. Grrrr.)
If you’re thinking of bringing even younger kids to see Tomorrowland, you should know that there is a lot of violence in the movie (fighting, explosions, car accidents), but while it’s not exactly cartoonish, none of it is gory.
Tomorrowland is rated PG, and opens today nationwide.
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