User Score
6.4

Generally favorable reviews- based on 1199 Ratings

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  1. Apr 2, 2012
    10
    First off, I would give this a 9.5 out if 10. Acting is good. Not amazing, but everyone does a good job. Score was really good. Had an incredible story. It also has really good special effects and great set pieces. Overall, this is a really good movie. Great movie, and one of my favorite Tom cruise movie. Highly recommended.
  2. Jun 26, 2011
    7
    If anyone can make an amazing blockbuster, it is Spielberg, and he has proven this once again. Overall, this is a rather good film. Technically - simply stunning. Great visual effects, sound and cinematography make it a pleasure to watch. It is one of the rare blockbusters that are actually decent when it comes to the plot, also. Ironically enough, the screenplay is also its weakest point. I was especially annoyed with the ending and the "happy family" crap. The demise of the aliens also came a bit too suddenly, and Spielberg could have made the transition more subtle, more intense. Nonetheless, "War of the Worlds" is going to be definitely one of the many blockbusters of Spielberg's that is going to be remembered as a good, entertaining, and thrilling film. Expand
  3. Aug 28, 2010
    5
    the plot of the original war of the worlds film was better then this. the original was about how helpless we where against a aliens invasion focusing on the the military just getting beatin down . the new one is all about the survivle of tom cruises charicter and his 2 obnoxous kids. the aliens are only there to chase him down . while this is not completely unentertaining it just doesnt bring what the original had to the table . woulda been better served being called some thing els . Expand
  4. Sep 12, 2010
    3
    this movie i must say is very unsuccessful in my eyes for starters not providing an entertaining story i thought was even boring in some parts. the acting from the cast is the only thing that saves it in my opinion
  5. Dec 3, 2011
    9
    Lightning storm. "At the end of the nineteenth century no one would believe that things of the earth were keenly and closely by intelligences greater than those observed in men ... » HERBERT GEORGE WELLS Man is able to theorize, invent, build. It can create. The creation is quite another thing, is not yet within his reach, and perhaps never will be and maybe it's all well and good. "The War of the Worlds" has a deeper meaning in itself, rigid, introverted.

    And 'the act of the mirror, I understand, the true ruler of the narrative, that's where you find the starting point to delve into a story far from simple you see, do not listen / emotionally strong, because for many verse in terms of asynchronous communication and achromatic visual one. Dropped the mirror, as perverse as a catalyst for feelings is healthy nothingness, absence, emptiness.

    But, man, that's true, that is not wounded and bent soul immortality by an irresistible urge to imperialism, still able to find in the tears of a child, to give the world a teenager hungry for love of one's gender it is from this type of man that the world expects to see the spark to rise to a new time dimension.

    This world, upon reflection, is chock full of tripods as small as powerful for their destructive capacity. We begin our defuse; those from higher intelligence to us, we can do, quietly without.

    Good Click!
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  6. Feb 23, 2014
    7
    The film doesn’t have much substance but it is still pretty entertaining. The film is well shot and knows how to pull at your heart strings. If you want good visuals, emotional connection, and be midly entertained check this out. If you want something more sophisticated this isn’t it is just one long chase/survival movie.
  7. Jul 18, 2012
    8
    The ending was indeed lame, but taken exactly from the book. You got a problem with the ending, take it up with H.G. Wells. In terms of "disaster" movies, this is as good as they get - Spielberg is a master filmmaker. It has heart, adventure, and terror (a river of dead people!!) not seen in normal movies of the same ilk. All in all, a worthy picture.
  8. Jul 6, 2014
    8
    When I first saw War of the Worlds at the time of release, I thought; "meh... It's alright". At that time I was young and single. I'm now married with two daughters. When I returned to the film recently, it had a much more profound effect on me. The family stuff was riveting and the action sequences actually quite terrifying. I guess being able to identify with the movie's themes makes all the difference! Expand
  9. Oct 22, 2011
    10
    Amazing movie! Steven Spielberg yet again, brings his movie magic to the big screen and astonishes us all. Amazing special effects(helped by the big budget) was only one of the many characteristics that made it an unforgettable movie. Amazing plot line and awesome cast was what made it an awesome film. The cast included Tom Cruise, Dakota Fanning, and a lot more. The plotline of this sweet alien invasion adaption of H.G. Wells' 1898 award winning classic novel is another of Steven Spielbergs masterpieces and great adaptions to books. Like Minority report this one made it, with a four star rating and a 73/100 on this website. In this movie the world really is invaded. A lot of destruction and devestation in this horror/sci-fi about a dad trying to find a safe haven for his two children. I love this movie and highly reccommend to all. Expand
  10. Feb 14, 2012
    8
    I could see that the expectations for this sort of film would be mixed, but, for me, in a sense, I was optimistic about seeing Tom Cruise in a different film rather than Mission:Impossible. Funnily enough, Spielberg managed to pull if off, especially filming an American adaptation. But that didn't bother me, because I was gripped more or less by the time the tripods arrived. There are quite a few unnerving moments which made my skin crawl. It was worth watching, because it felt quite real, especially how the characters were feeling. A thrilling ride - Tom Cruise should do more of this. Great how the Americans could have a shot at this. The special effects were mind-blowing.The beginning felt a little stretched out, but at least the pace was relaxed halfway through the film. Overall, a film definitely worth watching. Expand
  11. Dec 28, 2011
    7
    Great movie and I'm very much impressed with Steven Spielberg's work and the visual effects. It takes the survival and family plot seriously. Its also one hell of a thrill.
  12. Dec 14, 2011
    10
    I've alreday watched the film of 1953, it was enterteining, but the adaptation was awful as well the story. But this one was better. Enterteining, awesome, the effects are thrilling and the story too. Steven Spielberg will always make good movies.
  13. Sep 12, 2014
    8
    A good movie in my opinion: dark, beautiful, stunningly visualized. Even if there's a happy ending of sorts to be found, I think the whole world of the film was pretty real in its cruelness.

    I was expecting a longer beginning before the actual action began to take place, but was surprised how quickly things got onto move - and after that, there was not a moment of peace before the
    ending titles.

    The movie seems to lack something, but I think it's mostly because most of the questions remained unanswered. It is not the mission of the movie to give us everything, though, and it makes your mind work rather than leaves it numb and bored. I can imagine watching this many times again, and perhaps find something new in the chaotic attempt of survival.

    The actual plot might have a little more in it, but then again, the concept of the movie doesn't really allow that (and the concept is very good in itself).
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  14. Jun 15, 2013
    7
    Pretty good film, if it wasn't for the BLOODY little girl; seriously, kills so much of the otherwise immersive atmosphere. But yer, the rest is good enough.
  15. Aug 28, 2014
    7
    An exhilarating re-imagination of Orson Welles' classic. Spielberg brings the story and the genre into the modern era. Nevertheless, I cannot help but feel War of the Worlds would have benefited from casting another actor instead of Tom Cruise.
  16. Mar 30, 2012
    9
    War of the Worlds is an excellent sci-fiction movie. The visuals were truly amazing but what makes this movie so good is that it comes across as very scary and that is were Spielberg shines. I only wished for slightly more battle scenes between the humans and aliens.
  17. Mar 31, 2012
    6
    Not the best film, but it certainly delivered. It was smart of Spielberg to leave the audience wanting more. I totally picked up on the frightening vibe and the movie was intense. Still... I thought it was boring and don't really have a desire to watch it again.
  18. May 28, 2012
    8
    A solid piece. Good acting, as well as a believable plot, rather nice effects. Only qualm I had was the minor issues with the H.G. Wells novel, but those can be overlooked. Overall, a rather nice film.
  19. Nov 24, 2012
    1
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. OK...team up Tom Cruise, Steven Spielberg, and one of the greater science fiction writers' best story...like the saying in "Crazy Like a Fox": "What could possibly happen?". As it turns out, not too much. Cruise running around like a maniac would not be too bad...IF it'd happened following the 'invasion'. However, it seems like that's the way the character normally acts. Dakota Fanning's claim-to-fame seems to be her ability to remember one line of dialog: "SHRIEK!". 'Sir' Spielberg places this film in the modern day, which might have worked. However, in this case, it didn't. In his re-imagining of the invasion, it turns out the aliens have been here all along (Spoiler...naw...). The so-called effects just seem too Michael Bay-ish, with the only item that I enjoyed being the 'harvesting' tripod. I will mention that the ending was great...it meant this tripe was finally over. Expand
  20. Apr 26, 2013
    0
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. That is the first one in my "black list" os worst movies ever.
    I hate when a history force too much to give a good end without any reason.

    The movie dont have a start, a middle and an end, have nothing. Every behavior from humans and aliens are so stupid. The script has so bizarre errors. Like someone recording a PEM with a cam, or Tom Cruise leting off the city in a car with ALL cars stoped in the streets, how?

    When i saw the end, i just ask "why"? The perspect of view was amazing, but all the rest was disastrous.
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  21. Dec 26, 2013
    9
    War Of The Worlds has defined alien/action movies, whilst setting a new bench mark that continues to be undefeated. Tom Cruise has performed to his A game in which could be his best acting to date, the whole cast was exceptional and they work well together. War Of The Worlds is a action pack adventure of the survival of humanity on its last breath from extinction via the threat of alien invaders. This is a must watch for all Si-fi fans and a great movie to watch with family/friends. Expand
  22. Jul 26, 2013
    2
    I don't know how one of the greatest film makers alive (Steven Spielberg) managed to turn one of the most iconic pieces in early sci fi literature in to just another bland boring action film. It reminds me a lot of 'Independence Day', except with out even the pluses of saying it's special effects are (comparative to the time) very good or having a memorable, stirring speech. In fact, that's a problem of the whole film, not one god damn thing in it is memorable, just Tom Cruise and his constantly screaming daughter driving every where. I think the big problem was that setting it in the modern era removes any sort of tension at all. When all the alien just have big anti-everything shields that can't be hurt by squat, there's no sense of humanity fighting back, so it turns from "War" of the Worlds in to "Ants on poking at an exterminators shoe" of the Worlds. Bland, samey, dull, boring, lazy, cliche, and all other manor of adjectives. And the worst thing is, this means it'll be far longer until someone is allowed to actually make a GOOD adaptation at last. (Stick with the radio drama/rock opera). Expand
  23. Sep 1, 2013
    10
    Its really great and interesting movie. Its not only about alien invasion, but although this movie shows society in unusual conditions. Best movie in its kind.
  24. Nov 13, 2013
    5
    War of the Worlds only battles with viewers interest.
    Based on the classic sci-fi novel; War of the Worlds is somewhat limited by design. Characters are left as shells, and the ongoing threat never is really addressed with any rhyme or reason.
  25. Dec 20, 2013
    5
    Guess the overacting was appropos given this was a cataclysmic alien invasion, but when the supposedly hyper-advanced super sophisticated beings show up as naked savages suspension of disbelief ends.
  26. Jun 16, 2014
    6
    Not so great and amazing. I actually demanded much more from my favorite director, Steven Spielberg - creator of E.T, Close Encounter of the Third Kind and Minority Report, to deliver another thought-provoking, visually striking sci-fi thriller rather than this somewhat flat, boring, tension-free summer blockbuster. I even fell asleep for the last 20 minutes of the film, which, i was told later by one of my friends, "explained" the sudden fall of these machines rising from the deep ground beneath Earth's surface. I don't know, to tell the truth, because after staying tuned for over the first hour, i don't care much about what happened in the end. I suppose a 6 would be rational, as sound editing, color blending and interesting description of the three-leg machines, to some extent, made up for the film's lack of good ideas to work on Expand
  27. Aug 10, 2014
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. very good stuff that is regularly scary and irregularly boring. it had me hurriedly making sandwiches (and throwing them at windows in despair) each time a patch of dark clouds and thunder came over days afterwards. the scariest parts for me were the aliens themselves and Tom Cruises acting (which was good!) Expand
  28. Feb 21, 2014
    2
    Way too much Tom Cruise in this movie. They took a great story line and made it about Tom Cruise rather than about alien invasion. They didn't do justice to the wonderful HG Wells story
  29. May 17, 2014
    9
    War of the Worlds is a near perfect experience however, I had some hard time getting into the visual effects because for some reason I couldn't like the CGI in this movie, I am not saying that the CGI bad but it is out of my league. Despite, the movie is one of the best science fictions in recent memory, it is clever, tense and leaves at the edge of your seat. However, I am not used to seeing a Steven Spielberg film that is so hardcore and heartless, so I would consider this movie Spielberg's weakest. On the other hand, I would consider it a distinct achievement in movie history of Sci-Fi. It is recommended, other than some weak CGI, it is a wonderful popcorn B movie! Expand
  30. Apr 23, 2014
    8
    That's what i call a good sci-fi movie.Tom Cruise is brilliant in his irresponsible dad role. There is always action and some awkward characters like the guy in the house in the middle of the movie.
  31. Jul 5, 2014
    9
    War of the worlds has superb special effects and a strong role from Cruise. The movie needed an update and Spielberg made one of the best remakes ever. Every moment of the movie is impressive and there are unpredictable segments as well.
  32. Aug 13, 2014
    4
    It is too witless as a sci-fi film, but delivers some thrills and some interesting visuals. Most leads overact and there is a lack of meaning behind the plot that makes it look empty. A disappointing addition to Spielberg's directorial filmography, with the only merit of a horror-like tone darkening it.
Metascore
73

Generally favorable reviews - based on 40 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 33 out of 40
  2. Negative: 1 out of 40
  1. 70
    In an unfortunate case of star casting, Cruise strains credibility as a hard-edged Jersey dockworker.
  2. Might be too realistic for its own good: The film takes perhaps a little too much glee in its abilities to manufacture mayhem. That being said, the ride is extraordinary.
  3. Reviewed by: Todd McCarthy
    90
    A gritty, intense and supremely accomplished sci-fier.