Critics Consensus

Critics Consensus: Tomorrowland is Visually Striking But Narratively Uneven

Plus, the Poltergeist reboot fails to live up to live up to the original, and Mad Men ends on a high note.

by | May 21, 2015 | Comments

This week at the movies, we’ve got a futuristic realm (Tomorrowland, starring George Clooney and Brittany Robertson) and a possessed property (Poltergeist, starring Sam Rockwell and Rosemarie DeWitt). What do the critics have to say?



Heartfelt, audacious, and visually striking, Tomorrowland is a testament to the power of imagination. Unfortunately, critics say it’s only a half-successful one — while the film is dazzling to the eye, its storytelling is uneven and its overall effect is muted as a result. Brittany Robertson stars as Casey, a smart, idealistic teenager who can’t get the vision of a magical, futuristic realm out of her head. She discovers that Frank (George Clooney), a fallen scientific wunderkind, can help to transport her to the place of her dreams. The pundits say Tomorrowland deserves credit for eschewing predictability and conventionality, but the end result is more admirable than emotionally satisfying. (Check out this week’s Total Recall for our Tomatometer guide to Disneyland, and watch our video interview with Clooney, Robertson, and more.)



Haunted house movies never seem to go out of style, as The Conjuring, Insidious, and Paranormal Activity demonstrate. Now, an update of Poltergeist tries to out-scare the competition, but unfortunately, critics say it’s a professional but lackluster chiller with little to distinguish it beyond its brand name. Strapped for cash, Eric (Sam Rockwell) and Amy (Rosemarie DeWitt) move their family into a suburban fixer-upper. Soon, however, their three children are bedeviled by mysterious supernatural entities, while Eric and Amy discover what happened to the house’s previous occupants. The pundits say Poltergeist offers up a few decent scares, but it’s a far cry from the inventive, iconic 1982 original. (Check out this week’s 24 Frames for a gallery of famous movie clowns.)

What’s On TV:

Person to Person” (92 percent) shoulders the burden of concluding a masterpiece by avoiding predictability while still offering a sweet sendoff for most of Mad Men‘s main characters.

Unbalanced storytelling and unnecessary, excessive brutality add up to disturbing viewing, although “Unbowed, Unbent, Unbroken” (59 percent) still includes enough plot revelations to offer hope for future episodes.

Creepy and strange in the best way possible, Wayward Pines (Certified Fresh at 85 percent) is a welcome return to form for M. Night Shamalyan.

Also opening this week in limited release:

Tag Cloud

Creative Arts Emmys The Arrangement aliens Set visit WarnerMedia Pixar adaptation Spring TV series Cartoon Network A&E Film DC Universe Tarantino 45 spanish language TBS supernatural zero dark thirty period drama Certified Fresh transformers miniseries Mary Tyler Moore 2016 Toys National Geographic Western MCU President Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt Red Carpet video book Polls and Games foreign Ellie Kemper Awards Tour San Diego Comic-Con cooking Election diversity Comedy Disney streaming service Mindy Kaling 2015 Extras Universal crime thriller Nat Geo finale Peacock comic Chernobyl Musical American Society of Cinematographers south america Britbox GLAAD Star Trek HBO Max Best and Worst Black Mirror YouTube Premium docudrama USA Network Amazon 2017 spinoff X-Men Box Office Rocketman disaster YA Arrowverse game show Year in Review Disney Channel FOX WGN Lionsgate discovery OWN Superheroe historical drama Reality Competition Lifetime game of thrones BBC America Women's History Month composers Cosplay 20th Century Fox justice league Tumblr Walt Disney Pictures Apple Writers Guild of America Oscars IFC Films mutant Mystery festivals Thanksgiving Syfy HBO Freeform what to watch unscripted Elton John ABC Family PBS Pirates CBS All Access Epix Pop Winners TCM boxoffice Cannes SXSW Comic Book natural history sports casting TruTV tv talk Horror Emmys Vudu Musicals animated Summer BET Heroines Starz SDCC 24 frames Family Binge Guide GIFs latino The Witch LGBTQ Fox News kids Lucasfilm Acorn TV TCA 2017 quibi Nominations TIFF dramedy Superheroes Watching Series anime children's TV Fall TV Ghostbusters crossover GoT romance witnail Trophy Talk Film Festival Song of Ice and Fire politics adventure Esquire LGBT war 2019 CW Seed thriller Marvel cults SundanceTV Dark Horse Comics Pet Sematary Amazon Prime Video Premiere Dates NYCC true crime movies CNN Showtime Adult Swim blaxploitation dc Super Bowl Ovation TV Brie Larson APB Shondaland DC Comics Countdown Video Games Drama Mary Poppins Returns Mary poppins theme song 21st Century Fox Podcast travel science fiction Tomatazos Country FXX ghosts dceu CMT Bravo USA Columbia Pictures Interview Captain marvel stand-up comedy New York Comic Con Amazon Prime Opinion Warner Bros. First Look psychological thriller Sundance Now Hulu ABC Sneak Peek Spectrum Originals mockumentary psycho E3 TLC Mudbound streaming Chilling Adventures of Sabrina DC streaming service based on movie Trailer E! 71st Emmy Awards Emmy Nominations Biopics Sundance sequel technology social media teaser Fantasy BBC YouTube Red space crime anthology PaleyFest DGA Sony Pictures Disney biography Kids & Family toy story TNT Nickelodeon Pride Month spain Grammys ITV Calendar Teen Food Network 2018 golden globes police drama cinemax spider-man green book nature El Rey talk show television Spike richard e. Grant CBS ESPN award winner Rock Schedule MTV binge elevated horror FX jamie lee curtis revenge Photos First Reviews comiccon Winter TV Martial Arts Television Academy Marathons Star Wars Masterpiece ratings robots Logo zombie Character Guide Comics on TV TV Land RT History strong female leads Paramount zombies DirecTV Stephen King sitcom Holidays serial killer IFC spy thriller TCA crime drama Comedy Central Sci-Fi Shudder Crackle Paramount Network 007 Valentine's Day Rom-Com Animation cars Trivia RT21 Quiz Infographic medical drama cats Awards See It Skip It Music VICE vampires facebook History Rocky Reality hist harry potter Netflix VH1 Action MSNBC hispanic cops Christmas dragons The CW NBC doctor who Anna Paquin singing competition political drama AMC