Amazon Prime’s The Tomorrow War, starring Chris Pratt, turns out to be worth the wait.
The Tomorrow War opens with a bang: the world is stunned when a group of time travelers arrive in the middle of a sports match from the year 2051. They’re here to deliver an urgent message: thirty years in the future, mankind is losing a global war against a deadly alien species.
As it turns out, the only hope for survival is to draft soldiers and civilians from the present, who will then be transported to the future and join the fight. Among those recruited is high school teacher and family man Dan Forester (Chris Pratt), and he is determined to save the world for his young daughter Muri.
In the future, Dan teams up with a brilliant scientist (Yvonne Strahovski). Meanwhile, his estranged father (J.K. Simmons) in the present is also on a desperate quest to rewrite the fate of the planet.
The Timey-Wimey Entertainment of The Tomorrow War
Originally supposed to hit theatres, Chris McKay’s The Tomorrow War was then acquired by Amazon in a $200 million megadeal. It now has hit the streamer and it certainly is the biggest streaming blockbuster of the summer.
The Tomorrow War has a highly interesting concept, with many ideas and themes. But first of all it’s an action film and it delivers on that front. Explosions, aliens, time travel, it fulfills every checkmark of a big summer blockbuster. The highlight of the film is the creature design, which comes as a surprise as the aliens haven’t been really prominent in the marketing, making me wonder if it can deliver on that front or fail, which could have been a problem for a sci-fi blockbuster.
A film that comes to mind is Independence Day: Resurgence, even though it had way more problems than bad VFX and uninteresting creature design. While the White Spikes won’t be as iconic as the Xenomorph or Predator, they are a believable and dangerous threat to our protagonist.
Speaking of the protagonist, Chris Pratt delivers a solid performance as Dan Forester. You totally buy him as the soldier, but he struggles during the emotional backdrop of the film, even though he proved that he is able to deliver on those scenes, for example in James Gunn’s Guardians of the Galaxy movies. He has the charisma and the one liners of an action hero, but he isn’t able to show his full skills.
This struggle during the emotionally charged scenes isn’t the fault of the actors, as it feels like those aspects have been added to give the characters the minimum of the needed motivation for their actions, but then never becomes a thing again. This could have been a death sentence for a film, but The Tomorrow War still manages to be engaging through it’s bombastic action and fantastic creature design.
The concept of a war in the future and that people from the past have to be recruited for it makes for some really interesting conflicts, that sadly are only talked about, but never fully explored. As the plot goes on it also begins to become a clear metaphor for the danger of global warming, but also doesn’t acknowledge that.
This all sounds like a bit of wasted potential and you can argue that it is, but the script also does things right, for example acknowledging a very obvious reveal very early in the movie, because I feared it would become this surprising reveal in the third act and that the whole film only works towards that.
The Tomorrow War is a full blown blockbuster, which just wants you to grab a snack, sit on your coach and be entertained. A interesting concept, fantastic creature design and a ton of action make this film THE streaming summer blockbuster.
The Tomorrow War is available on Amazon Prime Video. It is written by Zach Dean and directed by Chris McKay. It stars: Chris Pratt, Yvonne Strahovski, Betty Gilpin, Sam Richardson, Edwin Hodge and J.K. Simmons.
What do you guys think? Are you planning to watch it? Have you seen it already, if so how did you like it? Let’s discuss everything in the comments down below and on our Twitter.