“When I heard the idea behind Escape From Tomorrow, I thought it was one of the most amazing ideas I’d ever heard. It’s basically about a man who has a mental breakdown at Disneyworld, turning the “”happiest place on earth”” into a place of nightmares. But what was really cool about it is that it was shot at Disney, completely under the radar. The crew basically spent several months going back and forth between Disneyworld and Disneyland. They rode the same rides and wore the same clothes over again to get their scenes right. And it was all shot on the same kind of home movie camera that all of the tourists were carrying around. All of it without anyone at the house of mouse being any wiser.
Of course, Disney is none too happy about it, but so far they haven’t taken any action. A bunch of lawyers on Tomorrow’s side looked into it with a fine tooth comb and determined that it would be protected under law as parody. A lot of the legal logistics that usually take a couple days to straighten out took a month. My guess is that Disney is avoiding giving the film free publicity with a lawsuit.
But how did it all turn out? As a film, eh. It was more concept than coherent. The acting was subpar, and a lot of it was so confusing. I still have no idea what was going on with half of it. Add in the Disney factor, and it was kind of awesome. So different from anything I’ve ever seen. Having been to Disneyland a few times over the past year, I enjoyed watching for areas that I was familiar with. Similar to how I like to try and solve plot mysteries as they unfold, I was trying to figure out how they managed to film certain things. Did they really wait in line over and over to get multiple camera angles? What was the strategy for filming near empty scenes? Did anyone find their yelling odd? And that’s that there were considerations that didn’t even occur to me until doing more homework on the film. Things like how they’d have to plan out their shots with the time of day to keep that consistent as well.
The group sitting in front of me found things hilarious. I too could appreciate the humor, but I much preferred the dark side. Some rides will never be the same for me again. And there’s a couple images that I was convinced were gonna give me nightmares. Overall, this has to be one of the most inventive and imaginative movies I have ever seen. And I’ve seen a lot.
Escape from Tomorrow – \m/ \m/ \m/