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Plot Details: This Review Reveals Minor Details About the Plot.

Is the glass half empty or half full?

Tomorrowland (2015) on IMDb

Plot Overview

World's fairs traditionally contain the feature Tomorrowland to showcase incipient technology to thrill the fair­goers. E.B. White wrote about one such display of his boy­hood where people would line up to make a long distance tele­phone call. Most people had never made one before. It was a portal to a distant place. The experience was so novel it rendered some of the callers speech­less—sort of defeating its purpose.

“Tomorrowland” proper begins in medias res at the 1964 New York World's Fair. Young Frank Walker (Thomas Robinson) is selected by a futuristic recruiter, a young girl named Athena (Raffey Cassidy), to receive a stylized T pin that will allow him to travel through a portal to a distant tomorrow. There amidst futuristic wonders a droid repairs his invention of a jet pack (“It works now.”) It had till then been more a human rocket sled than a flying device. The judge of the invention competition David Nix (Hugh Laurie) treated it like a glass half empty rather than half full.

Moving forward to 2003 it's as if long distance calling has progressed to intrusive tele­marketing. Gov. Nix is beaming back negative vibes from Tomorrow­land to make our most pessimistic predictions into self-fulfilling prophecies. When savvy teen­ager Casey Newton (Britt Robertson) is given the last remaining T pin, she gets a glimpse of Tomorrow­land. She then sets out to track down an older Frank Walker (George Clooney), pursued by men-in-black and their robotic AA's, for help to get to Tomorrow­land to make a better future.


There's an enigmatic couple of Bible verses that go, (Eccl. 4:13-14) “Better is a poor and a wise child than an old and foolish king, who will no more be admonished. For out of prison he cometh to reign; whereas also he that is born in his kingdom becometh poor.” A couple forgotten verses in an ignored book of a neglected Bible are but standard fare in Disney pictures where smart kids outwit adult dolts all the time. Here the “wise child” is personi­fied thrice: in boy Frank who built his own jet pack, in girl Casey who sabotages NASA's scheduled launch site demolition, and in an AA young girl Athena (Raffey Cassidy) who is learning emotion though she's just a string of zero's & one's. The “old and foolish king” is Gov. Nix who can­not be reasoned with, “who will no more be admonished.”

“He that is born in his kingdom becometh poor” is Athena a product of Tomorrow­land who is down to her last pin, and then she has none. The king who “out of prison he cometh to reign” evidently refers to his mind still being imprisoned, or at least still influenced by his prison life. We're not given too much back­ground on Nix, but it is Nix and Frank together who “built some­thing they shouldn't have,” and Frank indeed makes a one-time one-way trip from his exile on Earth back to Tomorrow­land.

The hopeless situation Earth finds herself in reminds me of the demon- possessed boy in Matt. 17:14-16 the disciples couldn't cure. Christ's assess­ment of (Matt. 17:17-18) “O faithless and perverse generation” is also what Casey sees in school as she learns of MAD, over­popu­lation, global warming, etc. being either a breaking of faith with science or its out­right perversion. From my back­ground in engineering, I feel about the same way. Jesus thinks faith is the cure (Matt. 17:19-20), and so does Nix, “In every moment there's a possi­bility of a better future, but you people won't believe it. And because you won't believe it, you won't do what is necessary to make it a reality.” Jesus suggests a cure, (Matt. 17:21) “Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting,” a more focused prayer. Casey always wanted in class to know how to fix things, and young Frank had designed and built his own jet pack because nobody else would.

On a separate level with the same Eccl. verses, some more ancient biblical manuscripts have been discovered in the “prison” environ­ment under the influence of the gnostics who didn't believe in fasting, so they left out the “and fasting” in the verse above. Modern English trans­lations using these so-called "better" manuscripts follow along and leave us low-on-faith people to our own resources, which in “Tomorrow­land” didn't turn out so well. This being justified because the good native English words, e.g. “goeth”, have fallen into disuse, “He that is born in his kingdom becometh poor.” And where I've been going to church lately this old and foolish king of modern English versions cannot be reproached.

Production Values

This film “” (2015) was directed by Brad Bird. The screenplay was done by Damon Lindelof and Brad Bird with story contri­bution by Jeff Jensen. It stars George Clooney, Britt Robertson, and Hugh Laurie. The experienced George Clooney was the glue keeping his two inexperienced co-stars together. Britt Robertson, 25, has been acting for 15 years and this role is a big break for her. Her character is smart and annoying, so she might not appeal to every viewer, but I didn't mind. Child actress Raffey Cassidy is sensational as the android girl, Athena.

MPAA rated this film PG for sequences of Sci-Fi action, violence & peril, thematic elements, and language. Parts were filmed in Vancouver, BC, Canada. It runs a little long at 130 minutes. The musical score by Michael Giacchino follows what the film does visually while also under­scoring events as they happen. A favorite, “It's a Small World” (Words & Music by Robert B. Sherman and Richard M. Sherman) shows up in this Disney film, too. There is a very short scene shown after the credits. The production design and costumes range from a re-creation of the 1964 World's Fair along with a couple Disney-related attractions there to the near future and Tomorrowland itself. There's a marvelous mixing of past and present, including peeks at the future with a world much like our own. I particularly liked women's creative fashions of the future. This film is a feast for the viewer's eyes and ears. The pacing, though, seems a bit rushed and jumpy.

Review Conclusion w/ Christian Recommendation

This is a film you can take the whole family to. As someone with an engineering background, I marvelled at the technology. There were water works where swimmers were able to dive into the water pools and then out again from the bottoms that held integrity like a drop of water. This in contrast to what we have today, say, in computer modeling of the climate, which reduces the globe to a disc to simplify it for the computers we use. Kids would like the kids. Every­one likes a good adventure. There may not be any romance, but by the same token there isn't any mushy stuff either, just some vague feelings of a computer at the end. I think it's a great Disney flick.

Movie Ratings

Action factor: Well done action flick. Suitability for children: Suitable for children w/guidance. Special effects: Absolutely amazing special effects. Video Occasion: Fit For a Friday Evening. Suspense: Keeps you on the edge of your seat. Overall product rating: Four stars out of five.