10 December 2011

Movies: Super 8

Super 8 (2011) http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1650062/

Action / Drama / Sci-Fi Thriller

Set in 1979, a ragtag group of friends are making a zombie movie on Super-8 film. Yes, young'uns, if you have no clue what Super-8 film is, look it up. After sneaking out to film a night scene at the town's train station they happen to capture a train wreck and part of its aftermath before the film runs out. A mystery surfaces concerning the driver of the truck that derails the train, the unleashed contents of the train, the military shows up to contain and keep government secrets, adventures happen.

If you happened to grow up in the 70s and 80s this film will probably evoke tons of memories.  The film easily conjures "Goonies" and "E.T." and other Spielberg family-friendly fare.  It also had moments that reminded me of "Cloverfield". Which makes sense, Spielberg is an executive producer of the film. J.J. Abrams (Lost, Star Trek reboot, other stuffs) wrote and directed the film, and despite Spielbergian influences you can see a lot of Abrams's touch on this film. A little bit darker at times than Spielberg went with "E.T' and "Goonies". But still clearly an homage to those style films.

Decent cast of kids for the roles. interesting enough story, although somewhat predictable in outcome. It has your stock Spielbergian group of misfits of appropriate stereotypes, a recently dead parent of one of the kids with appropriate conflict between child and surviving parent, extended conflict involving the parent of another child in the ragtag group, the military/government machine stepping in to make life hard, etc. But that's okay - it is all very entertaining. Should be entertaining enough for both parents and younger age-appropriate viewers. I'm unsure how a viewer that lacks good "Goonies" and "E.T." memories will view the film. But if they do enjoy the film, they might just want to check out "Goonies" and "E.T.".

Definitely worth watching, not only for nostalgic nods to films of yore but as a modern family-friendly adventure film.

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