Friday, June 3, 2011

Super 8

For those that are saying they don't know anything about this movie, you are not alone. To jog your memory this film first got the attention of many of you during the Super Bowl with a commercial that came out of nowhere. And now nearly four months later we are finally going to be treated to the sci-fi thriller from writer/director JJ Abrams and Steven Spielberg. What we do know is that some kids witness a train crash and then unexplainable events start to occur. The big hush surrounding the film has almost generated a cult like following building the expectations of the film to difficult heights.

The story is based in the winter of 1979 and spring 1980 in a rural town in Ohio. The time period is actually kind of important to make the references made worth laughing at. However, it was clever setting the time period in 1980 because the film very closely compares to "E.T.: The Extra-Terrestrial" (1982) and "The Goonies" (1985). "Super 8" is the love child of these two films, but I still have to ask who invited Michael Bay. The explosions during the train crash seem to last forever.

I feel that the film is designed for adults that were 5-10 years old when E.T. and Goonies came out and now are grown up in their mid-30s with children that are 5-10 years old today. The group of kids that witness the train crash are very similar to the group from Goonies. As a fan I was hoping for a asthma inhaler reference, but I did notice the similarity between the character Cary (Ryan Lee) and his passion for blowing things up with Data (Ke Huy Quan) from Goonies. Towards the end of the movie he needed a line about booby-traps. I wanted to watch this film at a drive-in as it reminded me of my childhood watching movies with the family.

The acting in the film is not going to amaze anyone and the script has its plot holes, like how all the dogs leave the town and the horses are still there. Or how everything, including vehicles, are being magnetically attracted towards the water tower and the car with the kid passed out in it doesn't budge. I can look past these, but one thing that I cannot is the lack of a product placement tie-in with a popular candy. Goonies had the Baby Ruth while E.T. had Reese's Pieces. That isn't enough to fault the film; however Morgon Spurlock might have something to say about it. All that being said, the film is a quality 3 Quack film and perfect for parents to take their kids to. There is some language, but if you can get past that you will be fine.

Stick around for the credits to see a bonus film "The Case".

(screening date 6/4/11, release date 6/10/11, AMC Tyson's Corner 16)

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