Posted on 6/14/11 06:08 PM
I had always known I was going to see "Super 8" from the moment I saw the first teaser. That said I didn't have high hopes. The film's early marketing made it look like another "Cloverfield," and while that film was passable, it was also highly disappointing. Wind the clock forward to now and I am pleasantly surprised. "Super 8" turned out to be a very touching picture, capturing the feel of the early works of Steven Spielberg. It was like a cross between "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" and "Stand By Me."
The plot follows a group of kids in the late 1970s trying to make a film, who bare witness to a train crash that releases a seemingly hostile extraterrestrial presence. The acting is great, particularly from our child cast. Elle Fanning is just as talented an actress as her older sister, and young Joel Courtney is equally as good. The adult actors - like Kyle Chandler - are okay, though they're mostly in the background.
The special effects are passable, but the monster proves to be a victim of its secrecy (just like the Cloverfield monster). After all that build up there's no way it can fully live up to expectations, but then this movie isn't about the alien as much as it's about the bonds that form as a result of the situation it causes. Abram's love affair w/ lens flare continues and after a while you just have to learn to ignore it. Some plot points felt shallow and unnecessary but overall this was a charming film, and something w/ a little more brains than what we're used to in the summer.
Check it out.