War of the Worlds (2005)

War of the Worlds Movie Review

………………………………………………….

War of the Worlds Movie Review

War of the Worlds is a 2005 science fiction film directed by Steven Spielberg and starring Tom Cruise and Dakota Fanning. It is a pretty weak, troublesome remake.

………………………………………………….

Lightning never strikes in the same place twice

………………………………………………….

War of the Worlds Movie Review

………………………………………………….

It is a remake of the eponymous 1953 film and is in my opinion so much weaker in comparison. It has not a single ounce of fun and wonder that the original possessed. It is a pretty dark in tone, sluggish in pace and ultimately uninvolving movie that is one of the director’s weakest efforts.

Now I get what Steven Spielberg was trying to do with this movie. He was basically making a family drama film and the alien invasion is just the backdrop to that emotional, character-driven drama. But in my opinion that concept is not great in this example as he thus managed to make a War of the Worlds film that isn’t really a War of the Worlds movie. He could have taken any other catastrophe and it would have been better that way. There was no need to take the source material of this caliber and not use it to the fullest degree.

………………………………………………….

War of the Worlds Movie Review

………………………………………………….

So that is the problem of this movie in a nutshell. It tries to be two things – an alien invasion sci-fi film and a moving family drama, but fails at both of those fronts as both parts are lacking tremendously. We get to see the alien ship near the end and that was interesting, but other than that, the entire first half almost seemed like a different movie how much it strayed from science fiction and when it got to aliens, it mostly copied the original in those scenes.

But why does it fail as a family drama? Well, it does succeed to a degree in it as it has some nice scenes and solid characterization, but the character development needed to have been exceptional to sell this premise and it just isn’t plus the emotionally resonant scenes come too few and far in between.

Tom Cruise is reliably good as Ray and he definitely is the best part of this film, both the actor and the character and his journey. Rachel is cute but forgettable and Robbie is your typical teenager who is just there to represent teenage angst. These are fine characters, but far from great and sometimes they weren’t particularly interesting to follow and the movie did not make me invested in them enough to care.

………………………………………………….

War of the Worlds Movie Review

………………………………………………….

War of the Worlds has solid special effects, but overly abundant action sequences which are solidly executed, but take away too much of the runtime. The movie definitely features a very weird pacing. The direction and acting are solid, but the cinematography is awful. It features such terrible retro color palette that feels grainy and overly dark to the point that it made the entire movie less exciting. So it started off strongly and it has its moments, but this is mostly a weak remake that fails to improve upon the already flawed original.

The 2005 version of War of the Worlds is a weak remake that is so much inferior to the original 1953 film. I get what Spielberg was trying to do here and the movie has its moments, but it rarely succeeds as an alien invasion film or as a family drama as it does not contain enough sci-fi thrills and the family drama is not deep enough to carry it through. Its color palette is also pretty hideous and it hurt the movie tremendously.

My Rating – 3

Share
Posted in 2000s, 2005, Drama, FILM DECADES, MOVIE REVIEWS, Science Fiction and tagged , , , , , , , .

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.