Super 8

Super 8

(2011)

JJ Abrams (Star Trek, TV's Lost) directs a typically mysterious sci-fi flick, produced by Steven Spielberg, recalling the vibe of The Goonies or Close Encounters of the Third Kind.... More

In the summer of 1979, a group of kids in a small Ohio town witness a catastrophic train crash while making a super 8 movie and soon suspect that it was not an accident. Shortly after, unusual disappearances and inexplicable events begin to take place in town, and the local Deputy tries to uncover the truth – something more terrifying than any of them could have imagined.Hide

  • Directed by J.J. Abrams

    Written by J.J. Abrams

    Produced by Steven Spielberg ('ET', 'Jaws', 'Jurassic Park', 'Saving Private Ryan', 'Schindler's List', 'Catch Me If You Can', 'Close Encounters of the Third Kind')

    • Science Fiction
    • 111mins
    • Rating: M contains violence and fantasy horror
    • USA

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Flicks Review

Drawing inspiration from suburban kid movies of the early ‘80s, this Spielbergian production has the sentiment of E.T. and the rascally camaraderie of The Goonies. But don’t expect it to appeal too much to adult nostalgia. Despite dabbling with the scares, it’s really for kids or young teens (who will love it) and everyone else might have the feeling they’ve seen it all before.... More

None of which negates the classy production value and clanging sound design, however. Super 8 is a highly polished outing with plenty of good bits, especially the action set pieces (a massive train pile-up early on is grandly over-the-top), the seamless effects and the music that strikes a balance between ominous and magical.

In true JJ Abrams form (his productions of Lost and Cloverfield kept people guessing for a long time), the reveal of the ‘thing’ that the plot revolves around is kept in shadow or obscured for most of the running time. No prizes for guessing what it turns out to be, although we could run a competition to guess why the film has such a title, given that the characters' home-made film is pretty superfluous to the plot.

A subplot of fractured family dynamics means that too much of the movie plays in heavy-handed sentimental moments, which, when carried by the child actors, are too trite for adults and potentially too morose for the younger ones. Super 8 is likeable, if a little standard, so it will remain open to you to classify it – throwback or retread?Hide


The Peoples' Reviews

Average ratings from 39 ratings, 42 reviews
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BY morgana1972 superstar

Early 80's, Kids making Zombie movies (ok I'll Bite). Not bad I liked it I have to be honest I like all of Steven Spielberg's movies, so I can't be Bias towards him or the way he makes movies. Definetely not one for the whole family Pre teens or older I'd recommend to only.


Those children were fantastic and the ensemble acting generally was better than most of the films produced these days in Hollywood, led by star names rather than talent.
The film as a whole was satisfying if a little dirivative of many of the films of the 80s (perhaps the point?). But they were treated with respect and sometimes awe, which I guess is how many of us remember them.
Well worth the ticket price!


BY Hoss lister

Those of my generation remember seeing Close Encounters and E.T. as a kid and hold those memories dearly. Perhaps too dearly. Good movies, but were they truly great? J.J. Abrams also loved these movies and I hoped that he might just be able to give my children a similar cinema experience. Not the same, but something memorable. I wanted them to be taken along on an adventure where the kids were front and centre. It was a hard ask. Perhaps the exciting experiences of my childhood seeing... More these movies and others like Star Wars just can't be replicated today. My seven year old was too scared, my sixteen year old was not scared enough. There were so many parallels to Spielberg's early movies it made me question whether they really were as great as I thought they were. It was predictable, it was corny, the whole movie just seemed a bit silly. That sounds like E.T. but maybe that's the problem. It was new then, but this has so many similarities (it's even set in the 80's) that there are no surprises. And who was the target audience? Kids today are not going to relate to a world without cellphones and computers. I suspect the target audience was me and others of my generation wanting a trip down memory lane, and wanting their kids to go with them for the ride. Well it worked. They got me, but ultimately the film was a disappointment. On the plus side, the child actors in this movie were brilliant.Hide


BY mattg nobody

I consider myself pretty difficult to please - and am no great Spielberg fan - but I genuinely loved this: laughed, cried (there was something in my eye) and joined a small ripple of applause at the end. The most fun I've had in a cinema for ages


Ruddy hell!!! Burry good movie!!!!


Showing 5 of 42 reviews. See all reviews

The Press Reviews

  • Its pleasures are borrowed, but durable. Full Review

  • A wonderful film, nostalgia not for a time but for a style of filmmaking, when shell-shocked young audiences were told a story and not pounded over the head with aggressive action. Full Review

  • Like an old airplane (or spacecraft) jerry-rigged from scrap pieces and made air-worthy again, Super 8 has been patched together with 30-year-old spare parts to provide an enjoyable ride of its own. Full Review

  • Like his (Abrams) previous features, "Mission: Impossible III" and "Star Trek," Super 8 is an enticing package without much inside. Full Review

  • Super 8 may be yet another mainstream monster movie from a couple of big Hollywood brands, but it's a wonderful one. Full Review

  • A monster mash-up of '50s sci-fi, late-'70s / early '80s event movie and autobiography, Super 8 doesn’t possess the top-to-bottom greatness of the films it’s modelled on but, in shooting for the stars, leaves 90% of modern blockbusters in the gutter. Mint. Full Review

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