War of the Worlds

Starring: Tim Robbins, Tom Cruise, Dakota Fanning

Directed by: Steven Spielberg

Produced by: Paramount Pictures, Dreamworks SKG, Amblin Entertainment, Cruise-Wagner Productions

Distributed by: Paramount, Dreamworks

Genre: action/adventure

Xibo's grade:


Average grade:



B- B- B-
Review by Xibo Date seen: July 3, 2005
Viewing Location: Kip's Bay, NYC Grade: B-
Summary: More of a horror flick than anything else.
Spielberg directs this monstrosity, which of course has great special effects, and some decent acting by Cruise and Fanning. However the storyline kind of sucks. Part of it is the material given to work with; after all, this is a story about invading aliens that totally overpower the combined military might of the world. However, for the most part, we don't get to experience that; we don't see the many things they try to stop the aliens. Instead, these futile efforts happen in the background, while the focus stays completely on Cruise's character and his daughter. Frequently I felt like I was missing out during the movie, dammit, tell me what's happening in the world, what are the governments doing to battle these things, what are they trying? But we never really learn much of any of that. And when the father is reunited with the son, who we presumed to be dead, we are left asking, how the hell did he live? But that is not revealed. Lest you feel that was a spoiler, well, it wasn't, because the main plot of the movie isn't who lives and who dies, it's how a miserable, good-for-nothing deadbeat father steps up in a time of crisis and becomes a hero. Does this mean his future changes? Again, we are left with nothing. What we do get is two hours of horror movie, people screaming and running away from the monsters. That's the bulk of the film.  

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