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WAR OF THE WORLDS thread... (merged)

Old 07-12-05, 01:32 AM
  #451  
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Originally Posted by digiboy
Spoilers ahead folks:

....The fence is that same simple wood post fence and it has the same dip where it angles down into the ground. The way it is placed in that scene can't just be a coincidence.

When you see this scene, if you are familiar with "Invaders from Mars" (the 1953 original), I think you will agree.

I don't feel there is any implication of a dream at all. It is simply a nod to another great sci-fi film from 1953 with a theme of alien invasion.

Does it "fit?"
Well actually it does since it is the scene in WOTW where little Rachel (Dakota Fanning) is taken by the Tripod. The hill with the fence in IFM is where people are taken by the Martians.

What's Speilberg's point?...well it's just a nod, a reference.....

I really don't think there's any more to it than that.
I saw IFM many times when I was a kid and the fence scene is the second visual impression that pops into my head any time I think about it. As a long time SF film fan, I'm well aware of Speilberg's "nods and references" to "those in the know" about classic genre films.

Your observation about the scenes from both movies being where people are taken by the Martians/Tripod is very interesting, particularly when considering that Speilberg's WOTW manages to otherwise remain very close thematically to the source material (more so than Pals' WOTW) of an "everyman" character viewpoint. It's been a long time since I read Wells novel, but I'm fairly certain his "everyman " character never got caught by the Martians at any point in the story.

Storywise, why do Ray and his daughter get caught by a Tripod? What was the point of this sequence in the film? It was absolutely unnecessary. It was evident from his actions throughout the film that Ray would do anything he could to save his daughter. This capture sequence is a major thematic departure that is really inconsistant with the story. I think it could be cut without being noticing.

Still, you are probably right that there is nothing more to this. I readily admit that I am speculating. Although, I still don't think the IFM reference "fits."
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Old 07-12-05, 07:48 AM
  #452  
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[QUOTE=Jon2 I'm well aware of Speilberg's "nods and references" to "those in the know" about classic genre films.

"[/QUOTE]


Hey Jon,
hope this isn't hijacking, but I'd be curious to know about other "nods" that you have observed in Speilberg Sci Fi films. When he works in Sci Fi, I don't usually think about literary signifacance. There are points made about ecology and nature but to me most of these movies are just entertainment done reasonably well...fun. In Lost World, JP2 when the T Rex ends up in LA, there's that great scene where he is creating mayhem and the crowd, just coming out of a movie theater, turns out to be nearly all Asian, looks back at him in fear. It's an obvious nod to the classic Japanese Sci Fi "Godzilla" movies of years ago. It's meant to be funny and also possibly bit of a mild (and harmless IMO) racial dig at the Asian population living in the USA. I never attached much significance to it beyond that. Just fun.
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Old 07-12-05, 08:29 AM
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Originally Posted by digiboy
It's meant to be funny and also possibly bit of a mild (and harmless IMO) racial dig at the Asian population living in the USA. I never attached much significance to it beyond that. Just fun.
i'm not sure if racial digs are something spielberg would take part in.

it's just funny, and a movie connection.
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Old 07-12-05, 08:37 AM
  #454  
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Originally Posted by Jon2
I saw IFM many times when I was a kid and the fence scene is the second visual impression that pops into my head any time I think about it. As a long time SF film fan, I'm well aware of Speilberg's "nods and references" to "those in the know" about classic genre films.
...
Still, you are probably right that there is nothing more to this. I readily admit that I am speculating. Although, I still don't think the IFM reference "fits."
The real test of whether or not any homage or reference "fits" should be quite simple: would anyone unfamiliar with the reference think the shot was odd or disruptive? In this case, I think not. This is strictly a little filmmaker's bonus for fans of 50's sci-fi, and for everyone else it would go unnoticed.
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Old 07-12-05, 09:10 AM
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Originally Posted by pdinosaur
i'm not sure if racial digs are something spielberg would take part in.

it's just funny, and a movie connection.

yeah I gotta be more careful, i certainly don't mean to imply Speilberg is making a racist comment. It's just a harmless moment in the film that makes a humorous note. It pokes al little fun. Nothing more I'm sure.
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Old 07-15-05, 01:56 PM
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Originally Posted by REL77
Does someone have the text of the monologoue of the end of the movie? If so, can you paste it and put it in spoiler please...

Thanks
Lifted these from other places (so someone please correct me if these quotes have mistakes in them)...

Opening narration:
Spoiler:

Narrator: "No one would have believed in the early years of the 21st century. That our world was being watched by intelligences greater than our own. that as men busied themselves about their various concerns they observer and studied, the way a man with a microscope might scrutinise the creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water. With infinite complexity man went to and throw about the globe, confident of our empire over this world. Yet across the gulf of space, intellects vast and cool and unsympathetic, regarded our planet with envious eyes, and slowly and surely drew their plans against us."


Closing narration:
Spoiler:

Narrator: "From the moment the invaders arrived, breathed our air, ate, and drank, they were doomed. They were undone, destroyed, after all of man's weapons and devices had failed, by the tiniest creatures that God and his wisdom put upon this earth. By the toll of a billion deaths, man had earned his immunity, his right to survive among this planet's infinite organisms. And that right is ours against all challenges. For neither do men live nor die in vain."


---

BTW, the H.G. Wells book is in the public domain, so it's downloadable at this site. And since the monologues at the beginning and end of the movie are based on what's in the book, here's the original book versions for comparison...

Opening of the Book:
Spoiler:

No one would have believed in the last years of the nineteenth century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man's and yet as mortal as his own; that as men busied themselves about their various concerns they were scrutinised and studied, perhaps almost as narrowly as a man with a microscope might scrutinise the transient creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water. With infinite complacency men went to and fro over this globe about their little affairs, serene in their assurance of their empire over matter. It is possible that the infusoria under the microscope do the same. No one gave a thought to the older worlds of space as sources of human danger, or thought of them only to dismiss the idea of life upon them as impossible or improbable. It is curious to recall some of the mental habits of those departed days. At most terrestrial men fancied there might be other men upon Mars, perhaps inferior to themselves and ready to welcome a missionary enterprise. Yet across the gulf of space, minds that are to our minds as ours are to those of the beasts that perish, intellects vast and cool and unsympathetic, regarded this earth with envious eyes, and slowly and surely drew their plans against us. And early in the twentieth century came the great disillusionment.


Near end of the book (it actually isn't the epilogue, but one chapter earlier):
Spoiler:

In another moment I had scrambled up the earthen rampart and stood upon its crest, and the interior of the redoubt was below me. A mighty space it was, with gigantic machines here and there within it, huge mounds of material and strange shelter places. And scattered about it, some in their overturned war-machines, some in the now rigid handling-machines, and a dozen of them stark and silent and laid in a row, were the Martians--_dead_!--slain by the putrefactive and disease bacteria against which their systems were unprepared; slain as the red weed was being slain; slain, after all man's devices had failed, by the humblest things that God, in his wisdom, has put upon this earth.

For so it had come about, as indeed I and many men might have foreseen had not terror and disaster blinded our minds. These germs of disease have taken toll of humanity since the beginning of things--taken toll of our prehuman ancestors since life began here. But by virtue of this natural selection of our kind we have developed resisting power; to no germs do we succumb without a struggle, and to many--those that cause putrefaction in dead matter, for instance--our living frames are altogether immune. But there are no bacteria in Mars, and directly these invaders arrived, directly they drank and fed, our microscopic allies began to work their overthrow. Already when I watched them they were irrevocably doomed, dying and rotting even as they went to and fro. It was inevitable. By the toll of a billion deaths man has bought his birthright of the earth, and it is his against all comers; it would still be his were the Martians ten times as mighty as they are. For neither do men live nor die in vain.
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Old 07-15-05, 02:06 PM
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Originally Posted by dhmac
BTW, the H.G. Wells book is in the public domain, so it's downloadable at this site. And since the monologues at the beginning and end of the movie are based on what's in the book, here's the original book versions for comparison...
h.g. wells
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Old 07-15-05, 04:51 PM
  #458  
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Originally Posted by jaeufraser
But do you actually read Ebert's reviews? While I don't always agree with the man, he always backs his opinion up. He makes it clear why he liked or disliked a film.

Ebert is a good writer, and even if his logic is sometimes suspect, with his reviews you can tell if you're going to like it or not regardless of what his opinions are.

However, he does have a tendencey to get caught up in some nitpicking, like with the tripods, or getting hung up in them being buried for a million years, even though that's something that nutjob Tim Robbins said and not stated as fact.

But let's be honest here... this movie would've gotten a better rating from him if Angelina Jolie, Jennifer Lopez or Neve Campbell were the lead.
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Old 07-15-05, 06:12 PM
  #459  
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I agree with Ebert on everything he said about the movie,Steven Spielberg's worse movie hand's down.
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Old 07-15-05, 08:09 PM
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Originally Posted by Legolas
Ebert is a good writer, and even if his logic is sometimes suspect, with his reviews you can tell if you're going to like it or not regardless of what his opinions are.

However, he does have a tendencey to get caught up in some nitpicking, like with the tripods, or getting hung up in them being buried for a million years, even though that's something that nutjob Tim Robbins said and not stated as fact.

But let's be honest here... this movie would've gotten a better rating from him if Angelina Jolie, Jennifer Lopez or Neve Campbell were the lead.
Yeah, Ebert cannot resist a movie starring a woman with a good rack (like Angelina Jolie). Sub her in for Tom Cruise in this movie, and I think his thumb (and probably another body part) would be pointing up.

However, as someone said much earlier in this thread, Ebert's review for WotW was predictable just from reading his Thumbs-Up (yet somewhat negative) 1993 review of Jurassic Park in which Ebert eerily predicts the spectacle side of WotW when he says: "I have the uneasy feeling that if Spielberg had made 'Close Encounters' today, we would have seen the aliens in the first 10 minutes, and by the halfway mark they'd be attacking Manhattan with death rays."
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Old 07-16-05, 11:01 PM
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Just saw this movie tonight and i liked it alot, i'm just not sure if its something i will watch over and over. I was disappointed by the ending but it didn't totally ruin the movie. I think a good ending could have been another alien species coming into defend Earth or something similar. That could have really drove home the War of the "WORLDS" angle. I know it would be a bit much to get across on screen though so it was probrobly better that they went with the ending they did.

Last edited by Puzznic; 07-16-05 at 11:15 PM.
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Old 07-17-05, 12:18 PM
  #462  
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Originally Posted by Puzznic
I think a good ending could have been another alien species coming into defend Earth or something similar. That could have really drove home the War of the "WORLDS" angle.
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Old 07-17-05, 02:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Puzznic
Just saw this movie tonight and i liked it alot, i'm just not sure if its something i will watch over and over. I was disappointed by the ending but it didn't totally ruin the movie. I think a good ending could have been another alien species coming into defend Earth or something similar. That could have really drove home the War of the "WORLDS" angle. I know it would be a bit much to get across on screen though so it was probrobly better that they went with the ending they did.
That's a pretty good idea for an ending (definitely better than the one used in ID4), but this was an adaptation of H.G. Wells' novel, and his ending is an important part of the story.
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Old 07-17-05, 10:45 PM
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Originally Posted by dhmac
Yeah, Ebert cannot resist a movie starring a woman with a good rack (like Angelina Jolie). Sub her in for Tom Cruise in this movie, and I think his thumb (and probably another body part) would be pointing up.


Bravo !! Also, very funny and probably accurate. LOL
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Old 07-17-05, 11:24 PM
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Originally Posted by Puzznic
I think a good ending could have been another alien species coming into defend Earth or something similar. That could have really drove home the War of the "WORLDS" angle
They DID use the war of the WORLDS angle. The worlds in question were the
Spoiler:
very small versus the very large.
That was the whole point of the prologue and the epilogue. It was meant to be
Spoiler:
ironic.
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Old 08-05-05, 11:44 AM
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Just saw this flick and absolutely loved it. I just wish I had the few minutes back that I spent on reading Ebert's review which was mentioned above. I always felt that he was a hack, and this review has not swayed my opinion in the least. He's all hung up on the tripods? I thought they were freakin' sweet, in a frightening sort of way. What a moran...
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Old 08-06-05, 11:00 PM
  #467  
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Just got back from seeing this. Fan-fucking-tastic. I was blown away. I only had a few qualms, but the good definitely outweighed the bad.

People on this forum seem to complain that Speilberg doesn't have a trademark style, well after watching this I have figured it out. Overly sentimental endings is his schtick. Which is my main problem the neat and tidy every member of his family lives. Even the son which seemed to survive what looked like an A-bomb detonating on his head. But the cheesy ending aside my only other gripes were unanswered questions like why are they here, when exactly, and why didn't they just colonize when they arrived the first time? And lastly, I don't think the ending was a cop out, I liked it but it was definitely skimmed over way too quick.

Now the positives, CG. Wow. This was a fantastic blend and was totally believeable. It was nice that SS never really showed everything 100%. The only shot that took me out of it was when Ray comes out of the house at the end to see all the red "veins" all over the yard. That looked terribly like a sound stage. But that is minor.

I personally enjoyed the perspective. I like how the only thing the audience sees is what Ray experienced. There was a guy discussing afterwards saying it would have been more enjoyable if they showed a few more of the alien ships being destroyed.

Acting. I enjoyed both Cruise & Dakota. Tom pulled it off quite well, and Dakota acted like any 8 year old girl would in that situation.

Mood: This movie was quite intense, I was surprised. The most tense for me though was the riot/raid on Ray's van. Had me on the edge of my seat.

Now the best part of the film: sound. I am blown away at how great this movie sounded. Probably the best sounding film that I have heard since Jurassic Park. Bravo! Definitely a must see in the theater. So I totally agree with marty, it will NOT be the same on dvd, no matter what your setup is.

Originally Posted by marty888
If you have any interest at all in seeing this, DO NOT wait for the DVD - this is a "big screen" experience all the way, with one of the best sound designs ever, and you should definitely see it in the theater.
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Old 08-07-05, 11:17 AM
  #468  
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just seen it and i liked it, the ending was so-so, but some amazing images, the ferry scene was wow 8/10. the first 3rd was great the last quarter was good
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Old 08-07-05, 03:42 PM
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I just checked and this movie has made over $220 million domestically and over $500 million worldwide; apparently it's sustaining well. Allegedlly this is Tom Cruise's biggest hit of his career. I wonder if this means he will team with Spielberg again? I actually hope not, as Spielberg's style seems to be damaged by Cruise's presence IMO. I don't know why, but their collaborations look more like Tom Cruise:Superstar movies than Spielberg stuff, but maybe that's just me.
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Old 08-07-05, 03:47 PM
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Wow, promotion aside I thought Tom Cruise was about as far away from Tom Cruise: Superstar as he gets.
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Old 08-15-05, 08:14 PM
  #471  
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I thought the movie was very entertaining. The ending was a little hokey, but the ride was well worth it.
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Old 08-15-05, 09:07 PM
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I just saw it again tonight at a different theater as before. The sound system wasn't as good. but it was still just as entertaining nonetheless. Noticed a few things the second time. This was probably John Williams best work since Jurassic Park (Duel of the Fates, aside).

Almost has that feel that Speilberg didn't want the backlash that he got from Jurassic Park. i.e. why does it take so long to get to the island? Had just enough charcter action in the beginning then thrusts us right into the action.

Hokey ending aside, how could a [generous]5'7" Cruise take down a 6'5" Robbins(who had a shovel, mind you)?

Can't wait to add it to the collection and watch on my system.
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Old 10-08-05, 01:37 AM
  #473  
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Saw WOTW tonight at the $1.50 theater and I loved the beginning of the film, but upon completion of the film I felt cheated.

I think it's a little silly to SPOILER things since this movie has been out for months... My major gripes with the film:

.
.
.
.
1. My freakin' arse Robbie survives!...
2. The ending sucked bigtime - Way too short, I found myself thinking huh? what? the film is over??
3. The technologically advanced aliens are once again idiots. Supposedly these superior intellectual beings overlooked ONE MAJOR FACTOR that killed them all.
4. O.k., so the idea that bacteria killed off the aliens is incredible lame, but explain to me how bacteria kills their far superior technology and disables their shields?
5. Dakota Fanning annoyed the hell out of me the entire movie with her stupid behavior and continuous screaming.
6. Tim Robbins' part was just ummm lame and killed any momentum the movie had going for it.
7. The aliens supposedly planted the ships on earth a million years ago or whatever, don't you think geological activity over that span of time would've damaged a lot of the tripods or atleast exposed some of them? Furthermore, in all of the digs that we humans have dug we never discovered one of them?
8. Not enough human-on-alien warfare.
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Old 12-10-05, 05:34 PM
  #474  
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Excellent movie.

I was not expecting any blood or bad language and I thought it was going to be just another cheesy big budget adventure. A lot of people kep telling me to check this out and while I was going to either way, I wasn't in a hurry to see it but I take that back big time now.

I easily consider this a horror flick. While it's nowhere near a full on horror film, It still has that tone and feel and I was very suprised to see Speilberg go this route.

Another factor that played into me not wanting to see this right away was Tommy. All the bullshit that was going on before this movie came out really tuned me out but I can honestly say that he didn't bother me one bit here.

As for the ending, what the hell is the big deal? So what?
Spoiler:
they end up at the mothers house at the end.....ok, so what the hell is the big deal? It's not like the scene played out to no end. Also, sure I wanted a more action packed ending but in the end I liked how the aliens died and I thought it made the films impact hit even harder. It showed that no matter what we tried to do stop the enemy, we were hopeless. This could have easily turned into a sappy shitfest where everything is resolved through the traditional hollywood method - i.e. that horrible piece of steaming dog shit normally referred to as "Independance Day"
.

I have one minor gripe with this film but it's nothing that bothers me too much and maybe I missed something but
Spoiler:
how in the hell did that dude who was fixing the alternator on the van NOT know that the block next to him was just under attack?
I'm watching it again tonight so hopefully I missed something but if not, no big deal.

One last thing - I absolutely loved the tension in the basement scene, very nicely done.
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Old 01-12-06, 10:53 AM
  #475  
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I just saw this for the first time (picked up the LE DVD) and while it will be worth watching again for the technical aspects when I get my basement HT finished, I have to say this movie was just one turd short of a crapfest. Nit picking over how the aliens are taken out and the tripods being buried there all along ignores the far more serious flaws of the film. The biggest one for me was the 'hey, the world is coming to an end, let's go catch the ferry' plot line.
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