The trailers for Tomorrowland didn’t do much for me, but the name of director Brad Bird is on my ever-shrinking short-list of creators who commands my automatic attention with each new work. I count The Iron Giant and The Incredibles among my favorite films, “Krusty Gets Busted” as my all-time favorite Simpsons episode, Ratatouille as an underrated gem in Pixar’s back catalog, and Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol as the rare fourth film in a series that tops the first two. The Tomorrowland trailer could’ve been two minutes of Brad Bird filling out tax forms and I would’ve penciled it into my calendar.
And then I went and saw it.
One of my online cohorts called it “the worst thing Brad Bird’s ever done”. I feel like that’s a phrase that should never exist and everything he shoots should turn into an alchemical blend of gold stars and platinum A-pluses and bubbly magic dust. I refuse to complete this paragraph with “Well, this had to happen sooner or later,” because, no, it didn’t have to happen.