Along with the new “Super 8” trailer that aired during the Super Bowl, news of the movie’s plot has surfaced. This is a look at the latest info on the movie and a look at the new movie trailer that aired during the super bowl, so be forewarned that some spoilers lie ahead.
Director J. J. Abrams has decided to lift some of the mystery surrounding the movie “Super 8” with the new trailer that aired during the super bowl and in a recent interview with the L.A. Times. And based on the latest info we’ve been treated to, it looks like the man is majorly paying homage to producer Steven Spielberg.
In his interview with the L.A. Times, J.J. Abrams describes the movie as an adventure focusing on a small town, calling it funny, sweet, scary, and mysterious. He goes on to say that it could be classified as sci-fi movie, a love story, a comedy, or a “special effects spectacle.” He came up with the plot of “Super 8” by combining two separate movie ideas together: one that took a look at the lives of kids and how they saw themselves and the world through their Super 8 camera, and one about the government using midnight trains to transport materials (and possibly creatures) from Area 51 to other locations. The first trailer for “Super 8” shows one such train being derailed by a truck that comes flying down the road; gets on the train tracks; and crashes head-on into it.
(Here’s where the info provided starts to turn into spoilers, so reader beware).
The movie takes place in 1979, and its main characters are a group of kids trying to film their own zombie movie using a Super 8 camera (so there’s a touch of “Stand by Me” here, except one of the characters is a girl played by Dakota Fanning’s younger sister). It’s revealed in the new trailer that, during the train derailment, the kids are filming dangerously close to where the train flies off the rails. So they end up not only witnessing the crash, but the creature escaping from one of the train cars.
J.J. Abrams reveals that part of the plot has to do with one of these friends losing his mother in a “factory death”, forcing his father, a deputy in the town who has never really been much of a parent, to take on a new role. So, as in “E.T.”, the movie isn’t all about the alien, but how a newly-single parent and child cope with their new life.
J.J. Abrams doesn’t really reveal more of the plot than this, but it’s also easy to see themes of “Close Encounters of the Third Kind” here; we not only see how something from another world affects ours in general, but how it affects a family.
But what about the alien? Is it a monster hell-bent on killing all humans, or something more? J.J. Abrams is definitely keeping it under wraps, but after watching the two trailers, I’m pretty convinced it has the power to remotely control vehicles. I believe it caused the truck in the first trailer to run into the train in an effort to free itself, especially after seeing cars at a car lot in the second super bowl trailer all turn on their headlights mysteriously. There’s also a scene where the sheriff and other officers are shown in a building with the lights flickering on and off, so maybe it can also manipulate electricity.
In the trailer, we also see a military presence. In one scene, a soldier appears to be using a flamethrower to destroy evidence at the train crash site while others with guns stand behind him. In another scene, we also see soldiers on a destroyed main street looking up into the sky as some kind of explosion takes place in a building behind one of them (it’s hard to tell what’s going on, but it’s a white flash that resembles a giant spray of water or something moving so fast it appears as a blur).
In another scene, we see civilians packed inside what appears to be some kind of military bunker/bus station. My best guess here is that the military is relocating the townspeople. In other scenes, we see some of the kids from the crash site running through a neighborhood where many of the houses are on fire. So either the town was evacuated after what appears to be an attack, or it was evacuated before this scene and the kids got left behind. One scene in the trailer also shows one of the military buses tilted on two wheels as it drives.
There’s a scene showing a man being dragged on his belly and by his feet by something powerful out of a wrecked convenience store or grocery store (with nice Crisco product placement). He’s more than likely being pulled or sucked out of the building by the alien itself or another extraterrestrial force. Perhaps E.T. phoned home and called in reinforcements to destroy the horrible creatures that were holding it captive; after all, there are lots of scenes showing people bathed in bright lights and looking into the sky (although they could be looking up at military helicopters; there’s always the possibility that the government could be turned into a bad guy in the movie like it has in a few other alien films).
So while there’s a little more info on the plot of “Super 8” out there, most of the movie (including the alien in it) is quite a mystery. Still, this little news about the storyline is leaving me with high hopes that Abrams can recapture some of that early Spielberg magic back from the good ol’ days when the man knew how to make movies.