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"SUPER 8"
(2011) (Joel Courtney, Elle Fanning) (PG-13)


At-A-Glace Content Summary

Alcohol/Drugs Heavy
Blood/Gross Stuff Heavy
Disrespectful/Bad Attitude Extreme
Frightening/Tense Scenes Extreme
Gun/Weapons Extreme
Imitative Behavior Heavy
Jump Scenes Extreme
Music (Scary/Tense) Extreme
Music (Inappropriate) Moderate
Profanity Heavy
Sex/Nudity Moderate
Smoking Mild
Tense Family Scenes Extreme
Topics to Talk About Extreme
Violence Extreme


QUICK TAKE:
Sci-Fi: After witnessing a horrific train accident while making a home zombie movie, some late 1970s middle school students try to figure out what happened and why the military has now taken over their small town.
PLOT:
It's 1979, and four months after the accidental death of his mother, Ohio middle school student Joe Lamb (JOEL COURTNEY) is trying to get on with his life, although his strained relationship with his town deputy dad, Jack (KYLE CHANDLER), isn't helping matters. What is helping is Joe serving as the makeup man on a zombie movie his best friend, Charles (RILEY GRIFFITHS), is making and will be entering into a film festival.

Working with them is cameraman and cherry bomb fanatic Cary (RYAN LEE), lead actor Martin (GABRIEL BASSO) and supporting performer Preston (ZACH MILLS). The guys think they've scored a casting coupe when they get fellow teenager Alice Dainard (ELLE FANNING) to appear in their film. Like Joe, she's looking for an escape, mainly from her alcoholic father Louis (RON ELDARD), who forbids her from hanging out with Joe, just like his dad does regarding Alice.

Nevertheless, they all sneak out at night to shoot a scene at the local train station. They're horrified, however, when a truck driven by their biology teacher, Dr. Woodward (GLYNN TURMAN), races down the tracks toward an approaching train, resulting in a horrific and highly destructive crash. Woodward survives, but warns the kids not to speak of this lest they and their parents be killed, mostly likely by the U.S. Air Force personnel who are quickly descending upon the scene.

The kids agree not to speak of it, but then strange things start happening in the town. The sheriff goes missing, all of the dogs run away, and acts of odd vandalism become rampant. As Jack tries to calm the residents' nerves while running into a stone wall in the form of Col. Nelec (NOAH EMMERICH), Joe and his friends, when not being opportunistic filmmakers using the military and crash scenes as backdrops for their film, try to figure out why the military is there and what they're trying to cover up...or capture.

WILL KIDS WANT TO SEE IT?
It's a good bet many will, at least those in the tween and teen range.
WHY THE MPAA RATED IT: PG-13
For intense sequences of sci-fi action and violence, language and some drug use.


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