The estimated world population in 2051 is 9,782,061,551; in The Tomorrow War, less than 500,000. Or, as Col. Muri Forester says of the Whitespikes, “they’re hungry, we’re food.” Rather succinct, wouldn’t you say? At a bloated 138 minutes, The Tomorrow War gives you lots of Whitespikes, and lots of action but, oddly, also a rather subdued Chris Pratt. Certainly, the star of Jurassic World, Guardians of the Galaxy, and a host of other films is used to facing end-of-the-world scenarios. His father, James Forester, suggested it might be his half-hearted attempt at facial growth. Whatever the case, the director and writers absolutely “spiked” Pratt’s humorous side.
In December 2022, Dan Forester tells his nine year old daughter “to be the best, you must do what no one else is willing to do.” Nearly thirty years later, what are they both willing to do to save mankind? Accused of being derivative, the Whitespikes do have raptor-like stealth of the Jurassic Park series. Every good apocalypse yarn must have an nutty, estranged relative. Here, thank J.K. Simmons as the “conspiracy Santa.” He not only helps save the world, but also the film. Overall, The Tomorrow War has it all. You get time travel, spaceships, volcanoes, and CGI gone wild. How so? There are a zillion Whitespikes, creepy, ugly, darn hard-to-kill aliens. I give The Tomorrow War 3.5 Gavels and it receives a 52% Rotten Tomatoes rating with a 6.8/10 IMDb score. Find it on Amazon Prime.
Soldiers from the future arrive with dire warnings that aliens will wipe out your grandchildren unless helped. The countries of the world unite to draft citizens to fight the Whitespikes who suddenly appeared in 2048. Over 70% of those sent never return. Those that do suffer PTSD. As news of future military failures mount, resistance to The Tomorrow War becomes stout. Why go if it can’t be won? You are our last hope? Will we let down our grandchildren?
The Polish-born Yvonne Strzechowski, changed to the slightly less tongue-twisting Strahvoski, first came to everyone’s attention in the TV series Chuck. No slouch, she received an Emmy nomination for Best Supporting Actress in The Handmaid’s Tale. So unemotional as Col. Forester, her tears as she recounted her absentee father seem out of character. After seeing Betty Gilpin in The Hunt, one might argue that she should have been cast at Col. Forester. Skills used in that film are wasted on the underutilized wife of Dan Forester. Both Sam Richardson and Edwin Hodge (For All Mankind), fellow draftees, are ones to watch.
The Tomorrow War introduces the viewer to the “jump band” and R-Force. Dan argues that “the world needs scientists and needs to keep innovating.” R-Force okay, jump band, not okay. The seven-day draft commitment is unique. By resting on the seventh day, who knew Whitespikes would be so biblical? Finally, don’t miss the Will Smith reference. The aliens never win on the 4th of July!
“It’s not that sci-fi action movies need to seem realistic. But The Tomorrow War‘s view of human nature feels so jarringly out of touch, it’s easy to get stuck in disbelief and hard to take anything else that happens all that seriously.” Mashable
“It throws ‘Alien,’ ‘The Terminator‘ and ‘A Quiet Place‘ in a blender. And, like that gross kale smoothie you made once, the result is gray goop.” New York Post
You connected with Will Smith in Independence Day! Maybe because we’ve seen it all before, but the connection with Chris Pratt just isn’t there. This one disappoints.