Chris Pratt is no stranger to huge blockbusters; Marvel movies and Jurassic World to name two. And while it would be easy to, on the face of it, group The Tomorrow War in with these other giant action tentpoles, it's different.
Why? Pratt tells Digital Spy: "Right off the bat, it's really rare that there's a film of this scope and magnitude that is original IP. That doesn't happen anymore.
"And I've heard a lot of people grumble about that. Why does everything have to be a sequel? Why does everything have to be based on a video game?" Irony of ironies for a man whose superstardom comes from huge IP-franchise series.
Of course, we give Pratt the benefit of the doubt: he loves cinema, and you can tell he's invested in the story The Tomorrow War is telling. "To step in and do something that's completely original based simply on an amazing script from the imagination of a wonderful screenwriter — I was really grateful to be in a position where I could, you know, join up with the studio and say, 'Hey, are you willing to write a cheque for this big of a movie? With no guarantee that people are gonna watch it?'"
Speaking of which, he really wants you to see The Tomorrow War... on one condition. "Turn off your phones."
It's a simple request, one that is made of movie-goers every time they go into a cinema. And in Pratt's view (and let's be honest, most people's) it's one that only enhances the movie-watching experience.
"I'm a huge proponent of the cinema. I love it. In what other part of the world, in what other area do you see a collective group of people take two hours to do something together with no phones?"
It's a bittersweet observation because The Tomorrow War should have arrived in cinemas, but the global health crisis meant it was delayed and eventually set for release on Amazon Prime Video.
"You can still have an amazing viewing experience watching this on Prime," Pratt insists. "I would just advocate: turn your phone off. Sit down, commit to watching all the way through.
"You can do it in the comfort of your own home. Turn up the volume as loud as you can and watch on the biggest screen you can and really just allow yourself to be immersed in the story because that's the intention. That was always the intention."
The story is one of plot twists (that we won't reveal) that Pratt didn't see coming when he read the script. It was part of the reason he was so keen on the film. Luckily, there's no hint of them in the trailer either.
If it were up to Pratt, he'd market the film like this: "This is called The Tomorrow War, it's got Chris Pratt. You like him from the Guardians of the Galaxy! It's Skydance, they spend a buttload of money, and you can watch it from the comfort of your own home!"
He knows it's an uphill battle, though. "I say this respectfully to all the streamers out there," Pratt prefaces, "a lot of the content on streaming sucks. When, through the pandemic, everyone wore out their Apple TVs and whatever TVs... and a lot of it is not good. But we watch it — because you can watch it and flip through your phone as you're multitasking as you're waiting out this pandemic.
"This is actually really good! This is a really good movie that was intended for the cinema. So watch it at home, but pretend you're at the movie theatre."
The Tomorrow War is available to watch on Amazon Prime Video from July 8
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