It’s award season! Now’s the time in 2016 where we reflect on the best stuff from 2015, and give awards to them. Everyone does it, whether it’s official committees, critics, or just people with blogs. Truth be told, I was just going to skip ahead and name my top five films of 2015, but I decided to dish out a small handful of other awards first. Don’t expect too many of these, but I figured there were some movies I just had to acknowledge for their individual attributes. Let’s start things off with a movie that didn’t get nearly as much credit as it deserved.
I will readily admit that Tomorrowland has its flaws. Primarily, it’s tone a bit inconsistent, as the film works best when it’s just being a whimsical sci-fi adventure. When it tries to be an action flick, it’s less successful (which is kind of surprising, considering this is from the same director as The Incredibles). There’s one particular action scene that takes place inside a hobby shop that I’m still not sure if intensity or comedy were the intended response audiences were supposed to feel.
With that said, did Tomorrowland really deserve all the flak it received? In terms of critical response, it was a mixed bag, receiving almost equal parts praise and punishment. In terms of box office, it was a total bomb, which of course made it the butt of many a joke, as though box office returns dictate the quality of a movie.
When all is said and done though, Tomorowland told a good and, dare I say, unique story with a good dose of imagination, made all the more standout by the film’s themes of optimism and exceptionalism, not to mention its utter disdain for the cynicism of today’s popular culture. In this day and age, when the millennial generation seems to be on a witch hunt against all things fun, a movie like this feels all the more special. Plus, it was a girl power movie without ever forcing it. It’s great to see a movie that can pull something like that off naturally.
But, y’know, it didn’t make any money. So I guess it must’ve sucked. Right?
Yes, Tomorrowland had its flaws, and of the five feature films directed by Brad Bird, it’s the most inconsistent of the lot. But it deserved so much better than what it got.