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Thomas & Friends Journey Beyond Sodor

Thomas & Friends: Journey Beyond Sodor is a CGI-animated direct-to-DVD musical adventure film and feature-length special based on the British television series Thomas & Friends, based on The Railway Series by Wilbert Awdry. The film is produced by Mattel Creations and animated by Jam Filled Toronto. It was released on 22 August 2017 in the US and on 16 October 2017 in the UK.

The film stars the voices of Joseph May in the US and John Hasler in the UK voice of Thomas the Tank Engine. It also stars the voices of Rob Rackstraw, Christopher Ragland, Nigel Pilkington, Keith Wickham, Kerry Shale and Teresa Gallagher with Mark Moraghan narrating his last special. Hugh Bonneville, Lucy Montgomery, Darren Boyd, Jim Howick, Sophie Colquhoun, Colin McFarlane and Nicola Stapleton join the cast. This special deals with many traits that children have such as autism, through the Experimental Engines.

Plot[]

On his way to deliver a goods train to Bridlington on the Mainland, Henry suffers an accident due to a faulty signal and has to be taken to the Steamworks for repairs. Thomas is upset that Sir Topham Hatt chooses James, thinking he’s Sir Topham Hatt’s favorite Engine, to take the train in Henry's place. Thomas collects the goods train before James so he can take it to Bridlington himself. However, the Troublesome Trucks disorient him and he goes the wrong way. Thomas finds a rundown Experimental Engines yard, where he meets Lexi and Theo.

Thomas later finds himself at a massive Steelworks factory run by Hurricane and Frankie who invite him to stay. Thomas initially declines but the Steelworks engines eventually persuade him as it is already very late. The next morning, Thomas learns that Hurricane delivered his train to Bridlington during the night and Frankie convinces him to help out at the Steelworks as to return the favor. However, they refuse to let Thomas leave and continue to force him to work for them. Thomas laments for his friends on Sodor and mounts an unsuccessful escape. Thomas attempts another escape during the night and is this time successful.

Meanwhile, back in Sodor, Sir Topham Hatt gets worried that the goods have been delayed later than its expected time and gets more worried about Thomas. He later tells Percy not to worry and that Thomas has been delayed and James tries hard to convince Sir Topham Hatt for him to go to the Mainland to save Thomas, which Sir Topham Hatt refuses James to go to the Mainland and says that he can't afford to lose another train, leaving James temporarily in charge of Thomas's Branch lines, while Thomas is in the Mainland trying to find a way back to the island of Sodor.

Back in the Mainland, Thomas meets Merlin, a third experimental engine who Lexi and Theo told him about and who falsely believes that he has invisibility powers. Merlin helps Thomas evade Hurricane and Frankie. Thomas is upset over his failures and the experimental engines remark that he is just like them. Meanwhile, on Sodor, James is begrudgingly running Thomas' branch line in his absence. Percy suggests that James go to the mainland himself to find Thomas. At Bridlington Goods Yard, James learns from the Troublesome Trucks that they were ultimately delivered by Hurricane. Hurricane, who is still there, spots James asking about Thomas.

On his way back to Sodor, Thomas meets Beresford again, whom he previously met after he got lost, and sees that Hurricane and Frankie are taking James to the Steelworks. Thomas enlists the help of the experimental engines to rescue James from being captured too. Theo and Lexi distract the Steelworks engines while Thomas and Merlin try to help James escape. The plan quickly goes downhill, a wild chase ensues in the Steelworks, James is saved but Thomas is put in harm's way when he almost gets melted by molten slag. Hurricane selflessly pushes him out of the way causing his wheels to melt as a result. Frankie claims that Hurricane will not be able to help her make deliveries and explains that they are overworked at the Steelworks, which is the reason they tried to enslave Thomas and James. Frankie, crying her eyes out, thinks that nobody wants to work at the Steelworks and all the other engines are too busy to help her and Hurricane. Thomas suggests that the experimental engines help them out. Although they are unsure if they are capable, they are still happy to try.

On their way back to Sodor, Thomas and James apologize to each other. Thomas explains to James that being friends is more important than being the favorite and they return home. Henry returns and asks what he missed in his absence.

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Trivia[]

  • This movie is the only one in the whole Thomas & Friends franchise to reach the 70 minutes, making him the longest movie since Thomas and the Magic Railroad

Sources[]

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