Sunday, June 19, 2011
The above poster really says it all. This film is a love letter to Spielberg and ET and The Goonies.
Super 8 is a monster movie that's really kind of an alien movie that's ultimately an adventure film. A group of kids are making a zombie movie on their 'super 8' camera in 1979. While doing so they witness a terrible train crash and are almost killed by its spectacular explosion that unleashes a monster (or is it?). They're told to keep it a secret or they will be killed. Strange things start to happen in the town. The military arrive and people begin to disappear. Joe Lamb, the shy kid whose mother dies in the opening credits of the film, eventually leads his group of friends on a rescue mission to save their friend (and girl crush) Alice from the said monster. His father, Jackson, played by the lovely Kyle Chandler, is the town's Deputy who takes over the investigation when the sheriff, himself, goes missing.
The film itself isn't anything original. An homage or love letter like this can never really be original, can it? As it takes many parts from preexisting stories and films that came before. But when it takes from great films that came before then that's a good thing. I liked the film for its nostalgic nods to the past. With the internet and modern technology, a film like this couldn't be set in the present day. There were some cliches thrown in, like the dead parent, the absentee father, the fat kid, the evil military man and so on. Also, some clarity would be nice as to why some townsfolk who go missing are alive, and others are not. It does feel forced at times with the sentimentality (near the end), but overall its heart is in the right place.
The hype leading up to the release of the film and the secrecy surrounding the storyline was all about marketing because as I said before, the film isn't original.
But any film that features, The Knacks' My Sharona is a-okay in my books.