NEWS FLASH: MARS ATTACKS WITHOUT REASON

It is an Associated Press dispatch, describing a universal nightmare.   —The Critic April 23, 1898

June 25, 2012.

After two unsatisfying productions, one produced by George Pal in 1953 and another directed by Steven Spielberg in 2005, it is obvious that Hollywood – from its producers and directors down to its writers and its gaffers – does not understand H. G. Wells’ The War of the Worlds (1898).  Both Pal and Spielberg modernize the story and by doing so, doom both films before the end of their opening credits. Like the Martians, who did not survive leaving their native soil, The War of the Worlds does not survive modernization without cheapening it, turning it into yet another clichéd invasion film with its sole distinction being H. G. Wells’ name on its credits. Continue reading