Two Blondes review a movie and mostly ramble about themselves.
I think I have made my affection for J.J. Abrams clear on this blog before, but just in case not – me *heart* J.J. Abrams. I am particularly a sucker for his television programs (Felicity, Alias, Lost, Fringe). His blend of science fiction and character dramas is right up my geek alley. I also adore Kyle Chandler. I’m not in high school and (obviously) never played football, but I wish Coach Taylor was my coach. That being said, before I dive in to my criticisms of the film, I want to be clear that I liked Super 8 and I think you should see it in the theatre. Soon.
Now for the criticisms. What is up with the lens flares, J.J.? Too many. In case you’re not sure what I’m talking about, here is an example:
They are those bluish streaks across the screen that were nearly constant in Super 8. Mr. Abrams used them so often that if you google, “lens flares in film,” the first three articles are about J.J. For the record, having a lens flare in a shot is traditionally considered bad or a mistake. However, I kind of like them as a stylistic choice…BUT IN MODERATION. In my brief googling I mentioned above, I came across this article about his use of lens flares in Star Trek. He admits to overusing lens flares, but says that it was because, “I love the idea that the future was so bright it couldn’t be contained in the frame.” OK, then why use so many in Super 8 when it is set in 1979?
My personal preference in monster suspense movies is that I don’t want to see the monster. Whatever I’m imagining in my head is way scarier than whatever CGI thing you can draw, especially if it just looks like a giant bug.
Now it’s time for my weird, petty issue: Elle Fanning is a terrific young actress, but I wish they would have dyed her eyebrows to match her hair. It distracted me for about 20% of the movie and sparked a debate between Alison and I over just how much someone’s natural hair and eyebrow color can differ.
J.J. Abrams made a great 1980s Steven Spielberg movie (and that is in no way an insult). Unlike a lot of science fiction, you actually like and care what happens to these characters. Go see it soon.
Watching Super 8 made me feel like a kid and reminded me of some of my favorite childhood movies, but with a twist of modern edge and awesome digital effects. The train wreck was incredible (I don’t think I’m giving any spoilers away by saying there’s a train wreck since it’s in the trailer). And the monster (I won’t say what kind of monster in an effort not to give away the story) was very well executed. I loved that you didn’t get to see it completely till the end. You were left mostly with glimpses, thus being forced to use your imagination as to what this thing is
I watched Super 8 at the Arclight Dome and it’s a really great movie to watch with a large audience. It’s one of those films where you felt everyone was excited to see it and enjoyed the movie going experience. It’s hard to go wrong when a film has both JJ Abrams and Spielberg attached to it. Not to mention, the very handsome Kyle Chandler (cue Jessica and I both sighing) and also a cast of kids that I thought were perfect casting choices.
I’m not gonna argue that some cynics might say parts of the ending felt a bit heavy-handed, but if you can put away your cynical side, and watch this movie with some childlike wonder, you’re in for a great ride
LA viewers: Very worth paying full price at Arclight (especially the Dome).
Translation for non-LA viewers: Did you read the part about an awesome train wreck scene or Spielberg, J.J. Abrams and Kyle Chandler being attached to this movie? Go see it!