The central idea in The Last Mimzy–of the future calling upon the past to save it–is one of great potency and emotion. That this takes the form of dozens (hundreds?) of rabbit dolls sent back through time is potentially sentimental, but also deeply strange, in a good way.
For the first half of The Last Mimzy, which focuses on two children discovering a rabbit doll and accompanying marvels, has a kind of innocence and simplicity that is deeply appealing. The way that this future technology makes them see the world is deftly conveyed.
The problems occur as soon as Homeland Security comes knocking due to a power outage created by the children’s experiments with the technology. From this point forward, the movie operates at the level of a Lifetime movie or an afterschool special. The characterization of pretty much everyone but the children is perfunctory at best and there’s a flatness to the dramatic tension throughout most of the rest of the movie to the unsurprising ending. Even worse, when the children are imprisoned by Homeland Security, you really don’t believe in any way, shape, or form that they could escape…or that there wouldn’t be more security cameras and personnel around, especially in the laboratory. At this point, the plot just drags the characters along.
Compounding this problem is the view of the future, which needs to be horribly real–like the brief glimpses of the future in Terminator–but comes off more like the discarded sets and costumes from a bad Dr. Who episode or a canceled Nickelodeon series. Whoever designed the future in The Last Mimzy has never seen a good SF movie.
Both Ann and I were deeply disappointed by the movie because we really thought after the first 40 minutes or so that we would like the whole thing.