"Super 8" was written and directed by J.J. Abrams ("Lost") and produced by Steven Spielberg.
It's solid entertainment with a retro feel (yikes, 1979 is now retro!), pitting a cluster of adorably geeky kids against something strange and mysterious. Sound familiar?
It should. This is like "E.T." meets "Goonies" meets "Stand by Me." Your pulse may be racing during the spectacular action sequences, but that feeling of déjà vu keeps you from being totally vested in the plot.
Joel Courtney and Elle Fanning head up a group of talented actors playing middle school pals making a zombie movie (a low-budget delight — be sure to stick around for the credits).
Much as I enjoyed "Super 8's" playful energy, I felt let down by how the plot points were so abruptly resolved in the final 10 minutes. No doubt the filmmakers were having so much fun, they lost track of time.