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War of the Worlds (2005)
ET is back and boy is he pis*ed off!!!
Ray Ferrier (Cruise) is a simple, divorced, builder living a modest life in New Jersey. His two kids are staying for the weekend, this is however a much different weekend as lightning storms strike all over the world making giant alien machines arise from the ground and killing thousands of lives. In an attempt to bring the kids back to their mom Ray and his family embark on a nightmarish journey where they have to deal not only with mortality caused by the aliens but also with all the desperate humans willing to do anything to survive.
A Long time ago a certain film director contradicted the generalized idea of aliens coming to conquer earth with heart warming tales such as "Close Encounters of the Third Kind" and "E.T.". Although in 2005 Spielberg completely reversed his vision of aliens to bring us a very dark Sci-Fi story.
Highly influenced by the actual atmosphere of paranoia in which the USA have been living since September 11th , the old H.G. Wells classic finds here a new interpretation. It's still follows its storyline but there are some deep connections to nowadays terrorism reality.
Unfortunately the screenplay is far from brilliant and Spielberg does make the huge mistake of following the box office friendly happy ending formula.
However, the movie does go way beyond the screenplay's limitations and that is due to the fact that Spielberg is a genius behind the camera who is able to create an emotional roller-coaster which keeps us at the edge of our seats all throughout the movie in a series of breathtaking scenes of pure anxiety and terror with astonishing special effects.
Tom Cruise is good at the characterization of an imperfect man who goes beyond his flaws becoming a heroic man who will do everything to protect his family. Dakota Fanning is amazing has the scared kid and it's no wonder why Hollywood cant get enough of her. Tim Robbins is however the scene stealer with his scarier than the aliens ideas.
Despite not being a masterpiece, War of the Worlds manages to be a mixture of family drama and pure sci-fi horror which, highly because it reflects the actual spirit of an America drawn in fear, will remain as one of the biggest and best movies of the year.
7 out of 10 (Sci-Fi Thriller - 2005)