Four Movies and a Cold in The Objectivism Meta-Blog Discussion Posted August 10, 2006 · Report reply By Diana from NoodleFood,cross-posted by MetaBlog <LI>War of the Worlds: This movie was not as bad as I thought it would be. The incompetent divorced father alienated from his children was sooooo cliche -- and sooooo annoying. The daughter (well-played by the delightful Dakota Fanning) was disturbingly neurotic for a girl under ten. The appearance of the son at the end was bizarrely out-out-place, since he seemed to have been wholly engulfed in a large fireball earlier due to his altruistic determination to bravely sacrifice himself in a futile battle with the aliens. I particularly disliked the way in which the aliens perished: deux ex machina -- or rather bacterium ex machina. (Paul tells me that's the fault of H.G. Wells, not the movie-makers.) Really, shouldn't the aliens have considered the possibility of germs?!? To my great frustration, that sudden ending foreclosed the much-hinted-at possibility of the humans discovering some ingenious method of destroying the aliens. That would have been lovely: existing human weapons might be too primitive to defeat the invaders, but clever humans can find some weakness to exploit if they choose to think rather than run screaming in fear. In general, this movie confirmed by general view of Stephen Spielberg's action movies: he masterfully places his audience in a thoroughly alien world, but doesn't do anything significant in the course of returning them to normality other than place a bunch of random obstacles in the way. http://ObjectivismOnline.com/blog/archives/001960.html I saw this one over a year ago, so my memory may be a bit faded. But there were two things I recall liking quite a bit: 1) Regardless of how much of a failure the main character was before the invasion, you have to admit he held up wonderfully during the crisis. He should have commited to staying away from the cities instead of trying to reach his urban relatives, but aside from that foolishness he generally kept his head and showed a lot of courage and intelligence under fire. Enough even to single-handedly destroy a tripod, although he wouldn't have survived it without that serviceman's help. 2) Speaking of a serviceman's help, I liked the way the military was portrayed. Namely as being disciplined, powerful (even if way out of their league), courageous and genuinely commited to saving as many civilians as they could. At no point do I recall seeing a man in uniform and thinking that he didn't deserve to wear it; rather, my emotional sense was that if my life must depend on protection by others, then those are the kind of people I want doing the protecting. Kind of refreshing given current events. Aside from those two points, though, I mostly agree with what you said.