Over the years, there have been several titles that I consider good while most critics consider them bad, or even terrible. Roland Emmerich and Michael Bay do not have great critical track records, but just to provide an example on both, I still love 'Independence Day' and the 'Bad Boys' movies. For some reason I can see them as nonsensical fun to enjoy with a tub of popcorn, while so many other titles of theirs, I just don't like as much, and understand where critics are coming from.
'The Tomorrow War' comes to us from director Chris McKay - an interesting twist considering his directorial titles include things like 'Moral Orel', 'Robot Chicken' and 'The Lego Batman Movie'. This has a much less comedic theme to it (although it does have its share) and relies much more on the sci-fi thriller aspect of things. For yours truly, I might say it's 'Independence Day' meets 'Starship Troopers' meets 'Tenet' (but its far less confusing). I also think this is yet another title to add to the list of video game movies not based on a video game. It was a bit of fresh air, too. I can't go see 'F9' for some crazy, fun, nonsensical action right now (but hopefully soon) where I live, so I'm glad I got to experience that kind of fun with this.
In the very near future, we meet former Green Beret turned biology teacher, Dan Forester (Chris Pratt). He lives a pretty good life with his wife, Emmy (Betty Gilpin) and daughter, Muri (Ryan Kiera Armstrong). One day, while watching the World Cup, the event is interrupted by a time portal that brings in a team of soldiers from the year 2051. They warn that in their year, humanity is facing extinction, and they need to recruit any able-bodied people for the fight. The drafted, time travelling "soldiers" head to the future through a wormhole device called the "Jumplink", serve a week, and head back if they manage to survive - often only to face another tour of duty. As far as those who get killed and the effect it has on the future population, we do find out that it seems the draft consists of people who are going to pass in a short time anyway.
Chris gets drafted and heads into battle with a team of misfits, including his jump partner, Charlie (Sam Richardson) and experienced soldier on his third tour, Dorian (Edwin Hodge) - probably my favourite character throughout this thing. He's just a total badass. Anyway, the fight is between the human race and some pretty awesomely creative aliens known as Whitespikes. These things are like if the Warrior Bugs from 'Starship Troopers' breeded with the 'Cloverfield' monster, and it has tentacles that shoot spikes at you. They're cool-looking, ferocious, and damn hard to kill - even with what seems like unlimited ammo. Can they figure out how to stop these things before humanity is wiped out for good?
Now, just to set the record straight, this thing is kind of full of plot holes when it comes to the time-travelling aspect. For example, there's a moment where Pratt wants to go to the future to fix something, but in the present, it hasn't happened yet, and he has a long-ass time to fix it. It's the same way 'Back to the Future 2' makes no sense when Doc and Marty go 30 years into the future to help his unborn children... in 2015 (my God, I feel old). The bottom line is, though, if you're not one for time travel plot holes, this might not be for you. Even when it comes to the ending, its a question of "no one else honestly thought of this?" It's silly. However, somehow, that's just a part of the movie's charm, a lot like 'Independence Day' or 'Bad Boys 2'.
You're here to go for a ride, have fun, feel a bit of suspense, have a decent laugh, and see J.K. Simmons play Chris Pratt's jacked-as-hell father, James. I know I said Dorian was my favourite character based on his badassery, but James is on par. He'll be the fan favourite, guaranteed, and it's cool that we finally get to see him in full form and he's not just some angry guy working for the Daily Bugle. Otherwise, this is a film that has a lot of spectacle to it, and I really wish I could have seen it on a big screen for that reason. If this were the 90s (the days before streaming), this would have been considered a summer blockbuster, and I don't see it as anything deeper than just that, personally. This is the crazy-go-nuts action movie for those of us still stuck at home during this pandemic. So tune in, turn up and have fun! It's ridiculous, but if you're anything like me, you'll still have a good time with it.