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Customer Review

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Daft but entertaining, 29 Dec. 2005
This review is from: War Of The Worlds (2 Disc Special Edition) [2005] [DVD] (DVD)
It's not H G Wells' War of the Worlds. It's Spielberg's War of the Worlds. You can tell because H G Wells was a good writer of brilliant stories that made sense. This film tells a gripping story that, after the enjoyable ride, and even when the ride is still going, you can't help feeling troubled by all the things that don't make any sense. In the book, the Martians were forced to leave their dying planet; and they left, carrying all their equipment with them, just as soon as they'd formulated their plan and arranged the invasion. Spielberg's aliens are in no hurry to attack. They've parked their vehicles under the surface of Earth for perhaps thousands and perhaps millions of years (depending on who's explaining the nonsense in the interviews included with the special features), where they've lain undisturbed, apparently, by plate tectonics or volcanic activity. And that's how long they've been plotting to exterminate the inhabitants of Earth, but not until they could find the time in their busy schedule - or until they could be arsed. So they must have started formulating their plans with dinosaurs or our ape ancestors (or whatever was around at that time) in mind. Unperturbed at finding the old order overturned by evolution, they make use of the new dominant life-form: they use humans to fertilise their red weed. One of their tripods seems to have accidentally trodden on a cow but other than that non-humans are ignored. Only humans are collected in their baskets, ready to be desanguinated for the nourishment of the weeds. Another barmy plothole is that the aliens' electrical weapon disables all the cars but Ray gets a car that works because the mechanic changes the solenoid - and nobody else thinks to do that, so he's the only civilian with a working car. And so on.
So none of it is very plausible but never mind. It's what we're used to - or getting used to - from a movie industry that's lost touch with reality. They give us amazing cgi (easy and great fun) and to hell with writing a coherent story (hard work and a drag). If you can just turn off your logic-circuits and relax, it's not difficult to enjoy the film. The acting is good. The family story is engaging and fairly convincing (unlike the invasion story). And of course, the special effects are very very good. The tripods are just awesome. If Wells is not spinning in his grave, I bet the one thing he'd really like about this film, is the tripods.
I recommend this film to those people who can resist the temptation to condemn the silliness of it all - or at least suspend their analysis until after they've enjoyed the ride.
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