If you don't, who will? Not Steven Spielburg!
I just saw the new War of the Worlds (fortunately for $3) and it
struck me that there were two major themes... aside from that humans
make great fertilizer. They were themes not in the original and thus
quite deliberately planted there, so you'd think they'd be important.
One is the staccato beat of Family, Family, Family that every major
Hollywood movie seems to feel is necessary these days. The other is
more interesting. Denial... to protect the children, of course.
Straight from the beginning and all the way through to the end, Ray
(the father) never tells his kids what's going on. He never has that
all important "Facts of Life" talk. "Kids, things will be a little
different now that our alien overlords have landed. When a mommy
alien and a daddy alien want to kill all humans very much..." Instead he
covers his daughter's eyes. Tells her to plug her ears. Don't look.
Don't listen. If you pretend it isn't there it can't hurt you.
You're still the center of the universe. Society is collapsing all
around you and people are being turned to ash but you just keep putting
your magic bubble around yourself and nothing bad can ever happen.
I had thought maybe they were going somewhere interesting with this, a
moral about trying to "protect" our kids from reality and instead
leaving them totally unprepared for life and what happens when you can't
just wish or scream your problems away. Instead, it goes nowhere
but to an idyllic suburb of Boston to be reunited with their mother
who has somehow weathered the battle right in the middle of a major
metropolitan area. Daughter is reunited with mommy, everything will
be all right. And that outright lie Ray tells his daughter about the
brother still being alive and going to meet them in Boston? Oh,
look... the Power of Love make it true! Turkey dinner all 'round!
I could draw some political parallels, but why beat the horse?