The Cannes Film Festival screened 20 minutes of J.J. Abrams's highly anticipated new release Super 8 today. The movie takes place in 1979 when protagonist Joe is only 14. Joe's mom recently passed away and since then he is committed to helping his friend Charlie make movies. One illegal late-night shoot with Joe's crush Alice (Elle Fanning) and his buddies has the whole crew witnessing a terrible train crash that will change their lives. The clip that was screened gave a mysterious look at the sci-fi thriller, which hits theaters in June, and while most of it is still under wraps, there's a lot to get excited about.
To see the five reasons I'm most excited about Super 8, just read more.
- The mystery remains. This is going to be one of those movies you need to see opening weekend because you don't want all your friends spoiling it. Even after watching 20 minutes, Super 8 is incredibly mysterious, and we didn't even get a good look at whatever creature the train crash releases. The scenes I watched had a very Lost vibe about them, which should make Abrams fans very happy.
- It's in the details. The movie takes place in 1979, and it's immediately clear that Abrams is committed to fine-tuning everything to perfection. In the short segment that I saw, the costumes were meticulous right down to Fanning's hair. At one point the sheriff is talking to the gas station attendant about this newfangled Walkman and calls teenagers carrying around mini boom boxes a "slippery slope." The humor and entertainment value is there, even in what appears to be a very nerve-wracking movie.
- Elle Fanning is a star. Fanning plays Alice, who is acting in her friend Charlie's movie. From the moment they start acting in the film within a film, Fanning's talents are obvious. She plays the only girl in the otherwise boys-only posse and gets to drive the getaway car from the crash scene, which is pretty badass.
- Big bangs. The first explosion scene of Super 8 is a sight to behold. It's big, but I imagine that means there are only bigger and more spectacular ones to come in the film. With the very young cast, romance might not be the central storyline, but the visual feast should be enough to tide viewers over.
- Lost nostalgia. It's smart, it's witty, and there are probably secret hints hidden everywhere. After a quick peek, I can only imagine the tiny detailed clues hidden throughout Super 8. There is certainly a Cloverfield feel to the hype and released footage, but it seems like Super 8 might pack a bigger cultural punch. Saying that Abrams's newest venture will have the cult following of Lost is a stretch, but there's potential for more big hype around the project, and we are very excited to see the whole thing!