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SmokeScreener's Movie Reviews (47)

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War of the Worlds, The (1953) 
War of the Worlds
1.5/4 stars

Sadly, the original "War of the Worlds" (1953) was a very unfocused movie. It wavered between trying to be a character drama and a disaster movie, but it really failed at both.

For starters, the lead actor (Gene Barry) portrayed a smug, unlikable character. This made it hard for me to care whether or not he survived, or whether he and Ann Robinson would actually fell in love.

Without a core group of characters to care about, you are forced to focus on the disaster movie elements, which in this case involve a bunch of hovering spaceships blasting their way through Los Angeles and the rest of the world. Most of this plays in documentary/newsreel style in an attempt to recreate the success of the Orson Welles radio drama that created so much panic. If like me you are bored with the character drama, you will have tons of fun looking at all of the cables suspending the spaceship models.

I was not a big fan of Steven Spielberg's remake, which is similar in structure, but the one key difference was that I cared about the characters in the 2005 film. That made a worls of difference.

As usual, I monitored the tobacco use in this film. There were 17 smoking incidents, 16 of which occurred in the first 24 minutes of the movie. 16 different characters were seen with tobacco in the movie. Thhis earned the movie a SmokeScreeners rating of 4 Butts! www.smokescreeners.org


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