Aside from the eye-catching innovative poster you see above, the much talked about ESCAPE FROM TOMORROW has nothing else to offer.
ESCAPE FROM TOMORROW premiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival to much acclaim. Why? It was entirely shot guerilla style at Disney World and Disneyland without consent from the Big Mouse and his friends or legal team. Does this make it a good movie? Not one bit.
The film opens with our protagonist, Jim (played by Roy Abramsohn) talking on the phone with his now future ex-boss. He’s at Disney World with his family and has just been fired from his job. Hiding it from his constantly frustrated wife Emily (Elena Schuber), Jim takes off with Emily and his two kids for a fun day of park rides, arguing, losing his kids, and ultimately, losing his fucking mind.
Making a horror movie out of one of the planet’s most beloved theme parks takes guts. The filmmakers spent weeks, months even, planning their film shoot. Since they didn’t have permission to shoot on park grounds, they only had one chance to get it right. These filmmakers are determined to get shit done, so it’s a shame the film turned out so poorly.
Where it goes wrong is the plot. We’re lead to believe the theme park is supposed to be the reason for Jim’s unexpected and rapidly growing insanity, but that’s not it. His downward spiral begins when he meets two underage girls and becomes obsessed with following them and daydreaming about doing things with them only a priest with a little boy locked in his basement would do. In short, he’s a pedaphile and in his constant state of loneliness just doesn’t realize it.
He also hates his nagging wife, his unappreciative and bratty kids, and just wants out. Chasing these two girls around the park is his temporary escape from tomorrow. (Note: If I were married to a chronic nagging wife and unnappreciative, bratty kids too, that would be just enough to drive me mad.)
With so many slams on the narrative of the film, I really can’t stress how cool it is that director Randy Moore patiently took his time pre-planning the film. There are scenes that needed perfect lighting and they had to rely on the sun’s direction. Imagine shooting guerilla style without permission and you only get one shot (Eminem - “Lose Yourself”) to get a scene correct or the shoot is ruined for the day - that takes chutzpah. But it still doesn’t make it a good movie.
ESCAPE FROM TOMORROW is the embodiment of every filmmakers worst fear: a cliché – and there are no surprises here. And while the film is crap, Moore will no doubt get more work in the future. He’s just too damn talented not to.