War of the Worlds [Blu-ray]
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This has both advantges and disadvantages. The latter include that we know already how the story has to end (although apparently some reviewers have never read the book, judging by their comments), but if you're good enough, you can still create suspense and maintain interest throughout the whole picture. Spielberg and Cruise are good enough. To draw a parallel, in the TV show "Smallville", we Know he's going to grow up to be Superman. We Know he's not going to end up with Lana. We Knew the friendship with Luthor couldn't last. Still, they made the journey itself interesting. Same thing here, in spades.
People have to understand this in order to review the movie fairly. Certain things about anyone doing the War of the Worlds just have to be there. Aliens; We're losing; An everyman who doesn't solve the situation, just survives it; TRIPODS! The 1953 version (which I enjoyed) didn't have them because the FX technology of the time didn't permit them to make them realistically. With what we can do now, any version that didn't have them would be unacceptable; Germs. Accept it, folks. The Titanic sinks at the end. Like it or not, Custer dies. Bruce Wayne is Batman. No one recognizes it's Superman behind Clark Kent's glasses. In Wells' story, we are saved by germs. Spielberg doesn't get to change that and still call it War of the Worlds.
One clever thing that was done here was that everything was seen from the Earthlings' point of view.Read more ›
The director also paid tribute to producer George Pal's 1953 Technicolor classic by using a similar "probe" into the basement occupied by Cruise and daughter Fanning, the destruction of a church, an American setting, and a brief appearance by the earlier film's stars: Gene Barry and Ann Robinson.
There are many tense scenes, making this film not quite suitable for younger audiences. The sound is loud and abrasive, befitting the on-screen destruction. Surprisingly, John Williams's score is quite subtle and, on occasions, is barely audible.
Actingwise, Cruise, contrary to his behavior off-screen, asserts himself well as the estranged father of two kids who must now do all that he can to save his children, as well as himself. Fanning's strong performance shows why she is one of most popular child performers today. And Robbins is appropriately creepy as the man with the plan to bring down the invaders.
While megahit "Independence Day" toured similar ground, "War of the Worlds" is more the work of a master storyteller and his name is Steven Spielberg.
That alone makes it a film not to be missed!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not the best movie. Main character runs away a lot and then the aliens die of earth's bacteria. Bleah.Published 5 days ago by Samuel D. Self
The mis-en-scene was superfluous. And the characterization was erroneous. Yet it moved thou in a strange although welcome manner. Four stars. I go to sleep now.Published 8 days ago by David Hertel
This film is filled with good special effects when the bad aliens are coming here.. The theme of family importance is also very prevalent. Read morePublished 9 days ago by me
what an obnoxious family..makes you want to root for the aliens..avoid.Published 15 days ago by tigerpaths
Overall, a weak rendition of the story but the film does have a basement sequence that is so far above the rest of the film as to be worth the rental fee. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Russell W. Sanders
|Topic||From this Discussion|
|There is another version of WAR OF THE WORLDS set in the correct period.||
Best dramatic pretension of WOTW is Jeff Wayne's musical version. Not only is it very well done it's faithful to HG Wells, AND it's got Richard Burton.
Dec 26, 2012 by Jeff DeWitt | See all 5 posts
|What were the red weeds for?||
They were growing the red plants, fertilized with human blood, as the first step in their environmental takeover of the Earth....Marsiforming versus Terraforming. Once enough of the Martian weeds were grown they could then introduce more complex alien flora and maybe even fauna; eventually... Read More
Dec 7, 2011 by War-Rocket Ajax | See all 4 posts
|Is the two disc version worth it?||
Widescreen version is definitely worth it. The features on the bonus disc were surprisingly light in my opinion (think it's less than hour of material- don't know why they didn't just put it on one disc). Interesting to see the design ideas behind the tripods, other than that I wouldn't... Read More
Sep 22, 2008 by Robert S. | See all 3 posts
|These negative reviews are hilarious!!!||
Agreed. This is a great science fiction film. I love the 1953 version of the story, too, but they cannot be compared. I dislike Cruise as an actor, but I like this film despite that fact. To me, that says a lot.
Mar 24, 2007 by Richard Daystrom | See all 21 posts
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