The Tomorrow War Review: A Time Travel War Against Deadly Aliens

The Tomorrow War Review: A Time Travel

The Tomorrow War had all the makings to be a new sci-fi action classic: time-travel, unbelievable creature design & very intense action. However, it runs at least 20 minutes too long & the drama between the characters never clicks. Spectacle over substance but what spectacle! It is certainly a rarity to encounter deep unique spectacular films in a sea of samey IP and loop-de-loops of the committee authorized blockbuster movies. Even when we do, it can get bogged down in its own franchise development possibilities to the point of being dead on arrival. Director Chris McKay follows up the really exquisite The LEGO Batman Movie with Amazon Studios‘ The Tomorrow War, which he directs with distinct ambition and elegance.

The Tomorrow War Review: A Time Travel

mankind is losing a battle against a dangerous alien race in the year 2051, Leading future leaders to fly back in time to enlist present-day troops. Only these warriors are regular people, headed by Dan Forester (Chris Pratt), a high school science teacher who travels to the future in the hopes of changing the tide. The Tomorrow War’s driving force, and the key to eliminating any tropes in the genre, is the concept of regular people facing extraordinary odds. Instead of being a kickass vehicle for extraterrestrial mayhem.

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The Tomorrow War Review: A Time Travel

An anxious government hires people it doesn’t trust, only to throw them into an apocalypse with little preparation. We witness as these regular soldiers drop from the skies with fatal results in the film’s greatest and most horrific moment, with just a few of them surviving at all. Despite Chris Pratt’s admiration for the military and the United States of America on social media, The Tomorrow War shows a government that has no respect for its own citizens, hurling corpses into an unwinnable battle. It’s a decision that, whether deliberate or not, lends an unexpected degree of complexity and societal critique to what could otherwise be a toxic, pro-military drivel.

The film was not interested in portraying its protagonists as anything other than human beings. Chris Pratt ditches Jurassic World’s dull machismo in favor of something more akin to Guardians of the Galaxy, where arrogant comedy hides tremendous depth. It may not be as moving as Guardians of the Galaxy (few blockbusters are), but The Tomorrow War never forgets that comedy is essential to mankind.

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Thankfully, the film extends this compassion to its other characters, notably Yvonne Strahovski, who offers the greatest performance and provides The Tomorrow War with its emotional intelligence. I Think You Should Leave’s Sam Richarson is also a pleasure, providing the film’s funniest scene in a chaotic staircase skirmish. J.K. Simmons gets to be an eye-catcher to the film, which means he steals the show and is a joy to watch as usual.

That isn’t to say that everything is perfect; the decision to make Pratt’s character ex-military detracts from the film’s conceit of “Normal People vs. Aliens,” with shouting hoo-rah directions and finger signals that make you wish for a film more exclusively focused on ultra-normal people like Sam Richardson’s Charlie. Despite this, Chris McKay’s live-action debut overcomes its flaws by focusing on its ideas of a world out of time where the only way to survive is to live together, for one another. Then and only then can there be hope for a brighter future.

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Arun Venugopal - Author, SEO Specialist, Content Writer of Maxblizz.

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