Super 8 Is Awesome
Super 8 Review
Super 8 is a brilliant movie that takes me back to being a kid, in more ways than one. For one, it captures the feeling of hanging with your buddies for the summer and doing what buddies do. Get into trouble, share your hobbies, just in general get away from the adults for a while. On the other hand, it takes me back to watching those great "kids on adventure" movies of the 80s. Movies like E.T. or The Goonies, that are also about goofing around with your buddies and getting into trouble. Except in movies like this, getting into trouble means finding yourself with a new pet alien or looking for pirate's treasure. In the case of Super 8, it means making a movie using super 8 cameras and stumbling on a big government coverup.
The movie uses the kids well and it turns out being more about their relationships and the relationships with their parents that drive the story along. The sci-fi side of the movie is nice, but it's merely a backdrop of the themes the movie is more interested in sharing, those of losing someone and trying to figure that out and move on with life. Heavy stuff for a movie of this nature, but that's what makes it work so well and gives it it's heart.
The kids are great and play off of each other very naturally. Kyle Chandler is believable as the father who's distance from his son is magnified by the loss of his wife and also the policeman who finds himself in the middle of the surrounding mystery. JJ Abrams delivers a fantastic movie, but I feel that maybe the special effects are a bit overdone. There comes a point in the movie where the less you see, the more effective it is. Unfortunately, I think we end up seeing too much for too long; but this is a minor gripe.
Super 8 works exactly as intended, a throwback to those types of movies that guys like me grew up loving, yet with enough heart and good acting to rise above being a mere superficial clone of those movies.