If Disney absolutely must adapt its carnival rides into feature-length films, you can’t really hope for better than TOMORROWLAND!
Recently, Laser Time asked you ‘What’s Your Favorite Future?‘ or rather, what’s your favorite depiction of society to come. I previously answered Blade Runner, but now I’d like to revise that to read “TOMORROWLAND!” Dormant rides, failed space race predictions of the 1960s and all. The last time I wrote about TomorrowLand, one of my favorite places in the universe BTW, it was about to get taken over completely by Star Wars. I still believe that’s coming, and if anything, this teaser for a movie based of Disneyland’s famously troubled attraction almost looks as if it’ll be providing a canonical reason. What do I mean? Well, here’s the movie’s official synopsis/trailer:
“…A bright, optimistic teen (Britt Robertson) bursting with scientific curiosity and a former boy-genius inventor (George Clooney) jaded by disillusionment embark on a danger-filled mission to unearth the secrets of an enigmatic place somewhere in time and space that exists in their collective memory as “Tomorrowland.”
That’s a Venture Bros. plot if I’ve ever heard one. But it also echoes the real history of the futuristic mecca of unrealized Jet Age potential, which was originally coded named “1952” and teased with Disney artifacts of the era. Couple that with one of the only revealed IRL shooting locations, Disneyland’s It’s A Small World ride, was confirmed by director Brad Bird himself to be a stand-in for the 1964 World’s Fair, the New York birthplace of the love-it-or-hate it attraction (sponsored by Pepsi!) as well as the optimistic spirit Tomorrowland embodies. And from the sound of Clooney’s character, he too appears to embody the frustrations of a sci-fi-inspired future that fails to live up to its potential, which Tomorrowland, both in terms of accuracy and expectations, very much is.
Is this just me projecting my hopes and aspirations for a plot rooted in factual history? Absolutely, because other than that, the teaser trailer shows us little more than a girl who can transport via a magical pin, which is something a little too “Old Disney” for even the tastes of a classic Disney fan like myself (Isn’t that the set up for Black Knight?) Yes, yes: I’m sure Bird’s got some surprised in store, so I’m neither passing judgement, nor anything other than over-the-fucking-moon excited for Tomorrowland. I just wanna know more. And it’s actually pretty awesome to have a secretive plot worth speculating over in the age of internet leaks and movies based on shit you’ve already read. For my ass, the concept of visiting a lost future is wonderfully strong, as is imagery like this, no?
If you dare to learn more about the fascinating history of Tomorrowland, I thoroughly recommend this DVD set if you can find it. Can’t wait to see the full trailer for this one. What do you think about Tomorrowland?