Generally favorable reviews - based on 41 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 28 out of 41
  2. Negative: 0 out of 41
  1. Reviewed by: James Berardinelli
    Jun 10, 2011
    Super 8 is in many ways a perfect summer movie: smart, exciting, heartfelt, and suffused with nostalgia.
  2. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    Jun 9, 2011
    This sci-fi thriller has an engrossing plot and a strong cast of fully drawn characters. There's even a sweet youthful love story. In other words, it's a summer blockbuster firing on all cylinders.
  3. Reviewed by: Joe Morgenstern
    Jun 9, 2011
    This new film isn't perfect, and may not be a world-changer, but it's certainly a world-pleaser.
  4. Reviewed by: Mick LaSalle
    Jun 9, 2011
    The pacing is superb, quick and agile without being frenzied, and the special effects are jaw-dropping.
  5. Reviewed by: Shawn Levy
    Jun 9, 2011
    It's spirited and funny and deeply entertaining, a summer movie for kids who think like adults and adults who feel like kids.
  6. Reviewed by: Andrew O'Hehir
    Jun 9, 2011
    It's an expertly constructed thrill ride with wonderful atmosphere and tremendous good humor; if its heart of gold is artificial, that won't stop you from enjoying the heck out of it.
  7. Reviewed by: Roger Ebert
    Jun 8, 2011
    A wonderful film, nostalgia not for a time but for a style of filmmaking, when shell-shocked young audiences were told a story and not pounded over the head with aggressive action.
  8. Reviewed by: Eric Kohn
    Jun 8, 2011
    Creepy implications keep Super 8 engaging, but the cast makes it click.
  9. Reviewed by: Lisa Schwarzbaum
    Jun 8, 2011
    Loving, Playful, and spectacularly well made, Super 8 is easily the best summer movie of the year - of many years.
  10. Reviewed by: Steve Persall
    Jun 8, 2011
    A movie of here-and-now thrills, goosed by judicious CGI effects that never overpower the humanity of the situation.
  11. Reviewed by: Roger Moore
    Jun 8, 2011
    J.J. Abrams, with Steven Spielberg producing, has made one of those jaw-dropping out-of-body summer entertainments that kids old enough to swear and see PG-13 films will remember on into adulthood.
  12. Reviewed by: Richard Corliss
    Jun 2, 2011
    The year's most thrilling, FEELING mainstream movie.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 678 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 26 out of 249
  1. Jun 11, 2011
    This review contains spoilers, click full review link to view. This is the last Spielberg movie I will go to see based on his name alone, last one before this was Indiana Jones 4 which was a total disaster. This movie starts out promising but then falls apart completely by the end. The main problem with the movie is that the monster has no purpose what-so-ever in the story and the film would have been great if it was just about the father son trying to find peace after the death of the mother in addition to the son coming of age with the girl and his friends by shooting a super 8 movie. That part of the movie is good, then the monster appears and not only destroys half of the town, but it goes one step further and destroys the film too. The monster is just stupid; it's not interesting and there's really nothing in the storyline of the monster that hasn't been done before. It's basically bits and pieces of other - better - movies that have already been released. The movie falls apart because for almost 3/4 of the film the monster is just background noise between the scene of the boy and girl, and his friends, all of which are interesting. Then at the end of the film these stories are abandoned completely and the monster's story - which sucks - is wrapped up in to a cgi blastoff which ends the film.

    Let's recap:

    Father and Son grieving after loss of the mother, the father is distant from his son. Climax: Father and Son hug at the end of the film. No talking about all of the previous stuff, just a hug.

    Son & Girl(friend) awkward relationship that blossoms in to...
    Climax: nothing...

    Monster & Military - The monster is captured, tortured and then escapes but not after killing innocent people and then being helped to escape by the kids who are scared to death of it the entire film, but then suddenly decide to help it. Which escapes in a space ship which it builds out of regular everyday items from 1979 which some how selectively magnetize themselves to the watertower (never explained, it sounds ridiculous writing this out) and then can summons thousands of minature cubs in to a ship which just suddenly appears for no reason. There is never an explanation as to how the monster suddently fixes his ship at the end. T

    Super 8 Movie - The kids are shooting this zombie film the entire god damn movie and it just becomes irrelevant at the end. You would think they would at least play the final cut during the credits or something, but no... nothing.

    Group of friends: The entire movie the son is running around with his four friends but at the end each ot these friends gets cut from the ending, there is no closure on any of their stories.
    Full Review »
  2. Jun 10, 2011
    What a pile of crud. Worst sci-fi movie I have seen in years. The original teaser was totaly misleading as to what the movie was about. I will think twice before going to any JJ Abrams or Spielberg movie again. Full Review »
  3. Jun 10, 2011
    Super 8 was a surprisingly delightful movie. Judging by the teasers I was really not interested in it at all but with names like Steven Spielberg and J.J. Abrams being branded on every trailer and poster I simply had to give it a shot. And I was really glad I did because it was very very good. It was really a tribute to the movies of the late 20th century wasn't it? It had all the elements of Spielberg's classic E.T. with a close group of friends on bicycles riding about town shooting scenes for a movie with "production value", adults who seem to be one step behind the kids on the whole mystery, the government intervention and of course an extraterrestrial being "trying to go home". The special effects were great, especially the train crash. Very breathtaking stuff. But even with all the amazing effects and all the action going around, we never really forget the emotional side of it all, Abrams never let's the action upstage the human aspect of the story. Joe who recently lost his mother to a violent tragedy lives with his grief-stricken, depressed and distant father begins to bond with Alice in an 8mm film production of zombies, she herself has father issues. Their relationship reminds me a bit of Abby and Owen in Let Me In united by their own little tragedies, finding solace in each other. Elle Fanning and Joel Courtney play their roles exceptionally well, amazing since it's their first time in a major movie. It was really refreshing to finally watch a movie which was not rushed through production (yeah I'm looking at you X-Men), very carefully thought out and which really took it's own time to tell the story that it wants to tell. I wasn't born in the 60s or 70s but watching Super 8 made me feel like I was in that period of time of filmmaking, it felt very authentic. The closing credits was awesome. Full Review »