Super 8 (2011) Joel Courtney, Elle Fanning, Ryan Lee, Zach Mills, Riley Griffiths Movie Review

Super 8 (2011)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Joel Courtney in Super 8 (2011)

It Came From Another Planet

Summer of 1979 and a group of friends in a small town are trying to make their own zombie movie which is how they come to be at a remote train station late at night having all snuck out of their homes. It is there they witness a catastrophic train crash when a teacher driving a jeep intentionally drives down the tracks to derail the train. In the midst of the carnage these friends find themselves looking for answers as not only do the military sweep on the town but people start mysteriously disappearing.

"Super 8" made me feel old on so many levels. One of those levels is seeing this compared to "Stand by Me" for the 21st century and I can appreciate why. With a group of friends, all specific character types, who have are basically having an adventure making their little movie it clearly has that teen adventure side. But whilst I am sure those in there teens will enjoy having their own summer adventure movie for some reason it felt like it was trying too hard to be like "Stand by Me" especially when it came to the child characters with the slightly fat one, the shy one, the good guy and so on.

Elle Fanning in Super 8 (2011)

But "Super 8" also made me feel old because with an abundance of lens flare this is a movie drenched in special effects with some ridiculously over the top. Now again I am sure many a teen would roar with approval at being in the midst of the chaos of the train crash as carriages fly through the air and tankers explode. But for me it was so over the top that you get a sense that behind all the effects was not much of a storyline and sadly there isn't.

Look visually "Super 8" is a 21st century crowd pleaser with not just out of this world visuals but also an appealing with cast with Elle Fanning absolutely stealing this movie with one scene which leaves you floored by how good she is. But for those needing more than visual appeal will find what lurks beneath all the lens flare and effects is nothing that new or special. Maybe that is the whole point, maybe this is J.J. Abrams showing how to do a 50s sci-fi movie but one made for the 21st century.

What this all boils down to is that "Super8 " wasn't for me but I can understand why a younger audience were probably impressed by it with its effect heavy drama.