the Worlds is another re-visioning of a classic story and in actual
fact, they managed to successfully re-imagine H.G. Wells classic novel
of the same name without creating too much of a Hollywood spin on it.
Originally written in a time when mankind wondered what was beyond the
stars and if other beings existed or would they be good or evil, H.G.
Wells masterfully captured the essence of this time. Like the original
story, Martians have invaded Earth and as humans are rounded up like
cattle, Earth is slowly being transformed into a hospitality planet for
these invaders. It will never make you look at tripods the same!
Spielberg embraces the fear of the United States, especially in this age
of terrorism where no-one is really safe and rather than an in your face
alien invasion movie, itís the build up of terror that makes War of the
Worlds so successful. The main protagonist of the film is Ray (Tom
Cruise), a recently divorced man who is attempting to move on with life,
however the baggage of why his marriage failed still haunts him. With
two children, Rachel (Dakota Fanning) and Robbie (Justin Chatwin), these
are the two most important things in his life, however displaying his
emotions and protection as a father is difficult for him. Robbie however
is quite resentful towards his father and when the aliens commence their
attack, he finds the courage to let his son go while he does everything
in his power to protect his daughter and become the father figure he
could never achieve in society.
not be one of the Spielbergís best movies, however Tom Cruise is a
delight to watch as the entire world unravels before him. As opposed to
the original story, Ray is the link to the viewer due to his down to
Earth nature and when those giant spider like aliens crawl across the
fields, itís quite eerie to watch and does at times parallel 9/11.
Unlike traditional alien movies, War of Worlds is more about the
psychological scare and elements of the thriller genre which works quite
well and once again still pays homage to H.G. Welles masterpiece.
Although the special effects are visually quite impressive, itís Rayís
journey which becomes the spotlight of this film.
Blu-ray, the video quality is stunning, thanks to the 1080p that
features sharp images, true deep blacks and when the special effects
begin, they are quite realistic which helps with the entire notion of
escapism. Sound is another highlight of War of the Worlds, especially
with its careful use of surround sound thanks to its 5.1 DTS-HD Master
audio. One recommendation though, play this movie loud!
Specials features donít take a back seat either and contain some great
highlights such as interviews with cast, family and even relatives of
H.G. Wells. It's all been put together rather well, even the production
diaries that are sometimes quite lethargic. Needless to say, for those
who love the movie, youíll be entrenched with these special features and
for first time viewers, they are definitely worth investigating.
conclusion, this modern adaptation of the classic H.G. Wells novel is
even darker than his original idea and what begins as just a bad day for
one man becomes a total nightmare that truly draws you into the
characters and the plot. The special effects are first class as is the
transfer to Blu-ray which makes this one of the better sci-fi thrillers
of the 21st century, highly recommended!
Revisiting the Invasion
Steven Spielberg and the Original War of the Worlds
Characters: The Family Unit
The H.G. Wells Legacy
Designing the Enemy (Tripods & Aliens)
Scoring War of the Worlds
"We are not alone"
Theatrical Teaser Trailer (HD)