DVD Review: “War Of The Worlds: Goliath” Is A Worthy Sequel To H.G. Wells’ Original Tale


Review by James McDonald

A retro-futuristic epic of steampunk battle set in 1914. It has been 15 years since the original H.G. Wells Martian invasion. Fearing another attack, the human race has prepared itself. This is the story of the battle tripod ‘Goliath’ and its young crew.

Anybody who is familiar with H.G. Wells’ story “War of the Worlds”, knows that it takes place in England at the end of the 19th century. When Steven Spielberg directed his 2005 film adaptation starring Tom Cruise, the events of the film took place in New Jersey and Boston in present time. “War of the Worlds: Goliath” is a retro-futuristic epic steampunk battle that takes place in an alternate-reality Manhattan in 1914, fifteen years after the martians attacked earth the first time. Fearing another attack, the human race has prepared itself and is technologically far more advanced than they’ve ever been. ‘Goliath’ is the vanguard of an army of steam-powered battle walkers, heat-ray biplanes and armored zeppelins facing a Martian fleet of giant fighting machines and flying wings.

The world’s only hope lies in a small resistance force, A.R.E.S. (Allied Resistance Earth Squadrons) made up of the best soldiers from all over the world. Our leader and the film’s hero, Eric, a young Englishman who watched both his parents die at the hands of the martians fifteen years ago, leads the fleet. As they begin a few days of war-games in the countryside to prepare for battle, they are unexpectedly attacked by martian scouts and shortly thereafter, the entire martian armada lands on earth, ready for a new world war. After the previous invasion, mankind has learned from the aliens’ technology and are now able to reciprocate firepower using some of their own advanced artillery.

With animation, filmmakers are capable of so much more and with “War of the Worlds: Goliath”, they continue the story, very successfully I might add, where H.G. Wells’ original left off. There are a couple of sub-plots throughout the movie that are meant to serve as story exposition but honestly, they are a waste of time and end up going nowhere. Thankfully, these are far and few between. The large aircraft carrier, the ‘Leviathan’, which is the base of operations, is very similar to the Helicarrier, the one used in “The Avengers”. As the old saying goes, “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery” and with this movie, the filmmakers have stolen ideas from so many other movies, I stopped counting and just sat back and enjoyed it.

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James McDonald
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