As a girl who used to only enjoy comedies, I was a little hesitant to see Super 8. But I had seen previews and was thoroughly intrigued. In addition, confession: I have a soft spot for Kyle Chandler. I have been a fan of him since Friday Night Lights, and I was really excited to see he had made it to the big screen. I looked forward to his performance in this movie.
I was lucky enough to see an early private screening of Super 8. I do have to admit that I didn’t necessarily follow the entire plot line and I was left a bit confused when it ended. I only think this was the case because I was so wrapped up in the amazing acting and special effects, that I just didn’t focus enough. At the same time, I was fully aware of what was happening, I just was a bit thrown off by the ending.
Nevertheless, I saw it again and it was clearer for me. It’s one of those movies where you can watch it 10 times, and each time you notice something new and the storyline is more understood.
Super 8 is based in Ohio in 1979 and follows a group of kids who are making a super 8 film for a Cleveland film festival. Joe Lamb (Joel Courtney), the son of Deputy Jackson Lamb (Kyle Chandler) has just lost his mother in an accident and many people in their town worried about him because he was much closer to his mother than his father.
Cut to four months later, one of Joe’s friends, Charles (Riley Griffiths) is making a movie and asks for Joe to help. They also enlist the help of Alice (Elle Fanning), Cary (Ryan Lee), Preston (Zach Mills), and Martin (Gabriel Basso). As they are filming at a local train station, they witness a horrific train wreck and a very loud pounding noise coming from one of the train cars before the door flies off.
From then on, very strange occurrences begin to happen in their city of Lillian, Ohio – missing persons, equipment, and dogs. The special effects and the acting in this movie keep you at the edge of your seat and anxious for what is yet to come. Whatever was in those train cars has you wondering up until the very end.
While the story is mysterious and entertaining, it’s the acting of the four young kids that really blew me away. Elle Fanning has the talent of any A-list actress I have ever seen. She has a monologue that made my jaw drop and the rest of the young boys also deliver incredible performances – and I mean to say that with age aside. They were downright extraordinary.
Kyle Chandler did not disappoint either. As I said before, I have always been a fan, and I happy to say his transition into movies was notable.
No matter what kind of movies you enjoy, this mysterious thriller is a well-made movie cast with incredible actors that will not disappoint. My only complaint would be that I wish the ending was a bit more clear, although I also think that is purely personal. That arbitrary ending could have been intended. I suggest you just see it for yourself.
GIA Rating: 8.5/10
Run Time: 112 minutes
MPAA Rating: PG-13