Category Archives: contextual and theoretical studies

super 8

After seeing a teaser trailer several months ago during a late night Youtube crawl after college, “Super 8” ;eft a lasting impression on me because of its secretive nature.
A brain child of film creating legends Steven Spielberg and J.J Abrams, “super 8” promised to be a very sci fi feature, even with the limited information provided about the plot previous to its release.
I saw this film today and as expected I didn’t know what to expect. The setting was very E.T, the props and scenery very accurate to the era and the costumes were impeccable.
The cast (in Spielberg tradition) comprised of children, with some excellent performances from the leading roles: Mary Elle Fanning portrayed a convincing role as the daughter of a local trouble maker and expressed fantastic emotion with a great sense of pacing and comedic timing, as well as having the ability to cry on cue.
Joel Courtney played a fantastic young hero and had the face of an angel. He really got into the character of an introverted and talented artist who was misunderstood by his father and liked the “bad” girl regardless of her father’s reputation.

The effects were incredible, the real time ballistics would have put Michael Bay to shame and the computer generated sections integrated seamlessly with the footage.

However, there was one slightly annoying event that kept cropping up in terms of suspense and surprise: I noticed a pattern that went along the lines of…

Mild Action.
Beginning of a line.
Cut off mid way by bigger action.

I wouldn’t have minded if this only occurred once, but five times was just a bit excessive.

Another credit was to the actual concealment of the creature’s identity, similar to the Cloverfield beast but with better implementation. What also set this film apart was how dark it was, both in plot and in visuals, mostly due to the night time setting, you increased use of violence and the language of the cast, including plenty of cussing from the children and an unexpected use of the “f” word.

Overall, “Super 8” is definitely a “Spielberg” masterpiece, with excellent effects, a talented cast, an interesting plot and emotional musical score. The ever present bikes and water tower usage were staples throughout but seemed to work and there was the added bonus of seeing the alleged “Super 8” film made by the children themselves. Although in parts the film was a bit disorientating it is definitely worth a watch and thoroughly enjoyable.

Just make sure to have a lid on your drink.