DVD: Super 8 (12)
Friday 09 December 2011
"It's on the news, that means it's real," maintains Charlie (Riley Griffiths) to his best pal, Joseph (Joel Courtney).
The teenage boys, along with their lead actress, Elle Fanning's Alice, have just witnessed a truck collide into a train while filming their latest zombie movie. This spectacular crash – the best action scene in JJ Abrams and producer Steven Spielberg's old fashioned action/sci-fi hybrid set in 1979 – delivers chaos to the small town of Lillian.
Joseph, Super 8's inquisitive hero, lives with his cop dad (Kyle Chandler), who is grieving his wife's recent death. Jo, meanwhile, plunges himself into making zombie flicks (pretty good ones) with his fast-talking, nerdy pals (they're a blend of The Goonies and the boys in Stand by Me) and is intoxicated by Alice's acting – Fanning delivers the best audition scene since Naomi Watts's in David Lynch's Mulholland Drive.
In fact, the touching relationship between Jo and Alice is the best thing about this slightly disappointing nostalgia piece. Super 8 should work better than this – the pace is, refreshingly, not frenetic, and the baddies, in this case the US Army, are suitably ruthless. But it's missing Spielberg's deeply human touch.
There's a tense (and soppy) ending, of course, but don't miss out on the teens' wonderful zombie flick during the credit sequence, which is arguably more enjoyable than the film that precedes it.
Review: Imaginative storytelling returns with vigourfilm
Bannatyne leaves Dragon's DenTV
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 World Cup 2014: 20 things we learned in Brazil
- 2 Why I'm on the brink of burning my Israeli passport
- 3 War is war: Why I stand with Israel
- 4 L'Oreal cuts ties with Belgium supporter Axelle Despiegelaere after hunting trip photographs
- 5 World Cup 2014: Robin van Persie gives his bronze medal to eccentric Netherlands fan moments after being handed it by Sepp Blatter
Sustained immigration has not harmed Britons' employment, say government advisers
War is war: Why I stand with Israel
7/7 memorial defaced on anniversary of 2005 attacks with ‘Blair lied thousands died’ graffiti
Australia facing international condemnation after turning around Sri Lankans at sea
Even when it brutalises one of its own teenage citizens, America is helpless against Israel
Socialist Worker called to apologise over ‘vile’ article saying Eton schoolboy Horatio Chapple's death is ‘reason to save the polar bears’