starring Chris Pratt, Yvonne Strahovski, J.K. Simmons, Betty Gilpin
written by Zach Dean
directed by Chris McKay
by Walter Chaw Not to be confused with Joe Haldeman's classic 1974 novel The Forever War, Chris McKay's super-stupid The Tomorrow War doesn't bear up under the slightest prodding yet demonstrates an admirable agreeability to "sciencing the shit out of" part of its solution while dealing, however rotely, with its father/son and father/daughter abandonment themes. Pratt, whose Q-meter stock has fallen because of a few public missteps, proves an affable presence as science teacher-cum-future soldier Dan Forester, enlisted by future soldiers into fighting the tomorrow war against thorn-tossing, bugbear monster things dubbed "White Spikes." See, in 30 years or so, humans are down to their last half-million and need people from the past to bolster their ranks. But doesn't that create some temporal anomaly problems? I'm very glad you asked. Yes, it does. That's why they only recruit people who are going to die within a decade anyway, which is either an incredibly stupid plan in its looseness or an incredibly cynical plan that presumes none of these people will procreate again within the next 10 years--or, you know, otherwise do something that will fuck with the future in an unexpected way. Maybe they've accounted for all that and simply don't share. Or maybe it's like that Mark Hamill anecdote about how his hair should have been filthy and wet for a scene shot out of sequence but meant to follow the trash-compactor escape in Star Wars: As Harrison Ford sagely informed him, "Kid, it ain't that kind of movie."