Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow [2004]

Director: Kerry Conran
Stars: Gwyneth Paltrow, Jude Law, Angelina Jolie, Giovanni Ribisi, Michael Gambon
Genre: Action, Adventure, Mystery
Rating: PG (Parental Guidance Suggested)
Runtime: 106 minutes

While setting a milestone in the progress of digital filmmaking, Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow resurrects a nostalgic fantasy world derived from a wide variety of vintage inspirations. It's a dazzling dream for anyone who appreciates the look and feel of golden-age sci-fi pulp magazines, drawing its unique, all-digital design from such diverse sources as Howard Hawks adventures, Fritz Lang's Metropolis, Buck Rogers, Blackhawk comics, The Third Man, cliffhanger serials, and the action-packed Indiana Jones franchise. Writer-director Kerry Conran's feature debut is also guaranteed to inspire digital dreamers everywhere, suggesting a paradigm shift in the way CGI-dominated movies are made. It's a giddy adventure for the young and young-at-heart, in which ace pilot "Sky Captain" Joe Sullivan (Jude Law) and intrepid reporter Polly Perkins (Gwyneth Paltrow) must save the world from a mad scientist whose vision of the future has tragic implications for all humankind. Angelina Jolie drops in for a glorified cameo, but it's the ultra-fortunate neophyte Conran who's the star here. His clever riff on The Wizard of Oz is a marvel to behold, and the method of its creation is nothing less than revolutionary. --Jeff Shannon

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