I love summer movies. You know the type – those fun filled adventures full of treasure or aliens or monsters, human or otherwise. “Super 8” is one of these movies. Reminscent of “The Goonies,” “Stand By Me,” “E.T.,” and other Spielbergian fare, this collaboration by the Great One himself and J. J. Abrams is a home run . . . an in park home run, but a home run nonetheless.
What I mean is that it doesn’t naturally hit it out of the park but by sheer willpower alone it rounds third and makes it home. The movie starts strong, with an awesome opening scene that left me saying “wow” out loud. The 70’s setting was subtle, accurate, but not over the top. It has everything you would expect from family tragedy, mysterious happenings, and a scary unseen threat that like “Jaws” only shows itself two thirds of the way into the film.
The acting is superb, especially from Elle Fanning and newcomer Joel Courtney. They carry the bulk of the emoting that takes place and along with Riley Griffiths and Ryan Lee, the child cast makes this movie work in spite of a somewhat complicated script with side stories and unnecessary dialogue.
I won’t ruin the film with anything resemebling spoilers, as the filmmakers were cautious in their trailers not to do so either. Suffice it to say it is a fun ride, full of action and and suspense, and well worth seeing in the theater, especially on a hot summer day or a rainy one. With a dream team like Speilburg and Abrams, what would you expect?