We might expect Disney’s take on climate change and global warming to be watered down a bit for its prime audience of toddlers and their parents in multiplexes, or gathered around the tube at home, but director Brad Bird’s live-action “environmental” call to arms is insultingly facile, not to mention maudlin, preachy, and mercantile. In what amounts to a combination public service announcement and Disney theme-park ad, a mismatched pair of dreamers – a middle-aged inventor (George Clooney) and a millennial-age wannabe astronaut (Britt Robertson) – discover that their marvelous dreams of the future are threatened by rising sea levels. Meanwhile the credulity of anyone with a high-school education is threatened by Bird, Damon Lindelof, and Jeff Jensen’s scenario, taken with the requisite spoonful-of-sugar Disney high-tech visuals. Even the drippiest of Disney’s PC animated history lessons (Mulan, Pocahontas, etc.) are a lot easier to swallow than this annoying “science fair” lead balloon (130 min.).
Director: Brad Bird
Producer: Damon Lindelof, Brad Bird and Jeffrey Chernov
Cast: George Clooney, Hugh Laurie, Britt Robertson, Raffey Cassidy, Tim McGraw, Kathryn Hahn, Keegan-Michael Key, Chris Bauer, Thomas Robinson, Pierce Gagnon, Matthew MacCaull and Judy Greer