As I’ve mentioned before on this blog, I will never stop loving Steven Spielberg’s 2005 take on H.G. Wells’ “War of the Worlds.” It was a damned decent science fiction epic, the special effects were fabulous, and it’s actually pretty scary upon its first viewing. The movie successfully channeled post-9/11 anxieties without exploiting them, and Spielberg characteristically humanized the story’s apocalypse by framing it through the eyes of a realistic, relatable modern family. (The terror of the genocidal monsters is a little ironic, too … when I was a kid, Spielberg was known for the wondrous aliens of 1977’s “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” and 1982’s “E.T. — The Extra Terrestrial.”)
Say what you want about Tom Cruise … I think he’s a decent actor, and he’s led some really terrific science fiction films. Dakota Fanning was fantastic child actor here, and Tim Robbins was predictably brilliant (even if his story arc, in my opinion, was largely unnecessary and too depressing).
This was a great flick.