Thursday, 8 November 2007

War of the Worlds (2005)

I have to say, this movie is an embarrassment for mankind, and not because aliens kick our ass. I can not believe that this gets a 7/10 rating on rotten tomatoes, or even a 6/10 on IMDB. It was complete and utter dross.

If you haven't listened to Jeff Wayne's musical (wikipedia) version of War of the Worlds, something I grew up knowing, then you may (if you lack enough sense) have been duped by some of the idiocy of this movie. If you haven't heard the musical, I urge you to get a copy because it's brilliance completely destroys the pathetic screenplay behind this Hollywood debacle.

So, let's get onto the naffness:

  1. Mechanic argues about losing business whilst everybody else around him is panicking due to the huge alien wiping out everything it can see.
  2. EMP wipes out all electronic equipment, cars, lights, mobile phones, everything... except, conveniently, the digital camcorder a guy is using to capture the massacre - or should I say, the digital camcorder shot the director wanted to use for cinematic effect.
  3. All cars have stopped, but not before the drivers could make a path just right for Tom Cruise to drive out of town.
  4. Planes that fall out the sky tend to create craters and get scattered around - not selectively take out parts of a house and land in large chunks. Another "cinematic effect" scene. Fortunately the car is untouched by the disaster to so Tom can get away.

  5. Absolutely absurd cliff hangers in every scene, does everything need to be a close escape? How come Tom Cruise can run beneath an alien and get away (the battle scene) whilst mass crowds are wiped out in a matter of seconds?
  6. The guy only invites Tom Cruise into his basement, ignoring other close people who are also running away.
  7. The aliens are invincible, removing all tension from the defense scenes. In the musical (set in the early 20th century) they manage to take a few out, giving some hope.
  8. The military seem to be putting up a good fight... except the aliens are invincible and wipe out everything instantly, so how come the military are still surviving so well?
  9. Weak explanation for alien arrival - "arriving in pods in the lightening" yet the hole in the ground was, well, not a hole.
  10. Unecessarily rebases a classic tale in contemporary times when the period setting was basically better.
  11. Aliens are buried in the ground across the globe. What, we just forgot to dig in the places they buried them?
  12. The girl approaches a picturesque river. Then a solitary body floats down. Then, out of nowhere, hundreds bunched together float down. Cinematography at it's glorious worst, especially when aliens vaporize people rather than dumping them in rivers.
  13. Insulting reference to the musical - some maniac blabbering about pipes in New York versus a deluded visionary.
  14. The son is alive at the end. Besides the fact he ran into a certain death battle zone (lest we forget the main characters were invincible), is Hollywood allergic to main character tragedy?
  15. The aliens are advanced enough to have beams that can wipe out living creatures in a flash, giant robotic machines that can brush aside man-made structures and scale all terrain, yet they can't scan a house without a giant tentacle with an eye, that can be fooled by a mirror and the operator can't recognise it when he is staring at a mirror.
  16. The tentacle scene in general. Unbelievably naff. I am amazed that somebody can come up with something so incredibly naff.
  17. Aliens turning people into smoothies. I mean, come on, do you need to add this in an attempt to make the movie scary? Isn't wiping out mankind enough?
  18. Oh, no, wait, we're fertilizer. I know, if we can't make a movie scary on merit, let's try and gross the audience out. Terrifying!
  19. The aliens look like their machines. How original.
  20. Morgan Freeman voice overs. Absolutely no impact.

God damn, it's depressing how utterly NAFF movies have become. All spectacle, no consistency and no substance.

Links: IMDB, Rotten Tomatoes