J.J. Abrams’ Super 8, as every critic from here to Timbuktu can tell you, combines nostalgia for the magical childlike wonder of circa late 70s/early 80s Spielberg classics like Close Encounters of the Third Kind and E.T. with the astonishing modern visual capabilities of the Alias and Lost co-creator who revitalized the Mission: Impossible and Star Trek franchises with his first two directorial efforts and now comes to us with a wholly original creation. Joe Lamb (Joel Courtney) is a fairly ordinary pre-teen in 1979 rural/suburban Ohio who is making a Romero-inspired monster movie with his friends (including Riley Griffiths as the immensely charismatic Charles, a chubby stand-in for every film geek turned filmmaker). One fateful night, an “incident” occurs that has literally intergalactic consequences as “something” causes a catastrophic train crash – all caught on Charles’ super-8mm film camera. Soon, the military and other government emissaries are involved. This is a delightful and consistently enjoyable throwback.