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  • Writer's pictureSteven Pluto

Under The Radar: Sky Captain And The World Of Tomorrow (2004)

Updated: Nov 21, 2022

When you think about it, there are truly only but a few true innovators, directors and screenwriters in the realm of sci-fi, adventure or fantasy films that have the ability or clout to create a film that will leave a lasting impression on the audience. Whether in conversation with friends and family, or browsing through Netflix , the same names will usually strike an undisputed seal of approval. Names like Cameron, Jackson, Nolan, Lucas, Spielberg, Scott, J.J. Abrams, Zemeckis and the Wachowski Brothers.

But there are innovators that haven’t had the same success or luck and that have fallen “under the radar”, and The Aroundtable would like to bring to light a gem of a movie that has been overlooked over the last decade. But it shouldn’t. That film is, Sky Captain And The World Of Tomorrow. The film was released in 2004 and starred Jude Law, Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie, but the real stars of the film are Kerry and Kevin Conrad.

Kerry and Kevin created this retro- futuristic film that merges old movie serials from the 1940’s with todays modern technology. Imagine taking the best elements of Indiana Jones, Han Solo, Flash Gordon and James Bond then throw them into a blender, you’d get, Sky Captain And The World Of Tomorrow. If you allow yourself to be drawn in, this is one fun filled action adventure, like no other. I haven’t had this much fun watching a film since, Raiders of the Lost Ark. Sky Captain has it all; giant robots, dinosaurs, rocket ships and an under-ground secret lair. So unleash your inner geek and enjoy the ride.

Sky Captain was one of the first films to be filmed entirely on digital backlot, meaning all the actors were performing against a blue screen with all the scenery and effects added afterwards. This eliminated the need for costly sets or locations. Sounds like your standard CGI spectacle that we’ve grown accustomed to but all these summer blockbusters owe some sort of debt to Kerry and Kevin Conrad. Sky Captain set the wheels in motion.

So if your sitting comfortably, here is the synopsis of Sky Captain. The film takes place in 1939 and New York has just been attacked by giant robots. Inquisitive reporter Polly Perkins (Paltrow) sets out to find the truth about these attacks with her ex-boyfriend, pilot Sky Captain (Law) and they find out that the world’s leading scientists have all but disappeared. Sounds unbelievable, well it is, but it’s imaginative and loads of fun to watch.

Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow does have a few strikes against it, Gwyneth Paltrow does seem to be totally uncomfortable filming against a blue screen and her performance seems “wooden” at times. Also, this is Kerry and Kevin’s first film and they seem to have a hard time binding all these different genres into one film. If Steven Spielberg directed this film, I have no doubt that Sky Captain would be a fan favourite.

Well, if you’re looking for a fun filled film that is also imaginative, this one truly deserves a second chance to be discovered. Check out Sky Captain And The World Of Tomorrow.

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