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Midnight Special

MPA Rating: PG-13-Rating (MPA) for some violence and action.
Moral Rating: not reviewed
Moviemaking Quality:
Primary Audience: • Adults • Young-Adults • Teens
Genre: Sci-Fi Action Adventure Thriller
Length: 1 hr. 51 min.
Year of Release: 2016
USA Release: March 12, 2016 (festival)
March 18, 2016 (limited—5 theaters)
April 1, 2016 (limited—58 theaters) April 8, 2016 (wide—493 theaters)
DVD: June 21, 2016
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Featuring Jaeden Lieberher … Alton
Kirsten DunstSarah
Joel EdgertonLucas
Adam DriverSevier
Michael ShannonRoy
Sam ShepardCalvin Meyer
Paul Sparks … Agent Miller
Sean Bridgers … Fredrick
See all »
Director Jeff Nichols — “Mud” (2003), “Take Shelter”
Producer Tri-State Pictures
Warner Bros.
Distributor: Warner Brothers Pictures. Trademark logo.
Warner Bros. Pictures
, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company
Midnight Special dvd package

Here’s what the distributor says about their film: “A provocative, genre-defying film as supernatural as it is intimately human, it follows a father, Roy (Michael Shannon), who goes on the run to protect his young son, Alton (Jaeden Lieberher), a boy with mysterious powers that even Roy himself cannot comprehend.

In the sci-fi thriller ‘Midnight Special,’ writer/director Jeff Nichols proves again that he is one of the most compelling storytellers of our time, as a father (Michael Shannon), goes on the run to protect his young son, Alton (Jaeden Lieberher), and uncover the truth behind the boy’s special powers.

What starts as a race from religious extremists and local law enforcement quickly escalates to a nationwide manhunt involving the highest levels of the Federal Government. Ultimately, his father risks everything to protect Alton and help fulfill a destiny that could change the world forever, in this genre–defying film as supernatural as it is intimately human.

Shannon portrays a father protecting his uniquely gifted 8-year-old son who has supernatural powers, played by newcomer Jaeden Lieberher, while being hunted by a religious sect and a government task force.

This sci-fi chase thriller stars Oscar nominee Michael Shannon (‘Boardwalk Empire,’ ‘Man of Steel’) as Roy, a father desperate to protect his uniquely gifted, 8 year old son Alton (newcomer Jaeden Lieberher). Joined by Joel Edgerton (‘The Great Gatsby,’ ‘Animal Kingdom’) and Kirsten Dunst (‘Spider-Man,’ ‘Melancholia’), this group must race to get Alton to a secret location, all while being hunted by an extreme religious sect led by Sam Shepard (‘Mud,’ ‘August: Osage County’) and a government task force headed up by Adam Driver (‘Girls’). It is a full-on chase, the outcome of which could bring about a world-changing event. Nichols says he wanted ‘Midnight Special’ to be a road movie like John Carpenter’s ‘Starman.’”

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Viewer CommentsSend your comments
Positive—I thought this movie was very impressive. Reminded me (both in look and feel at times) of sci-fi movies from the 70’s and 80’s such as “E. T.” and “Close Encounters”. At the same time, there was a strong example throughout the film of a father’s love for his son and family. The film was superbly well-acted and directed. I also was impressed with the amount of restraint this film had, as far as content was concerned. There was no adult content whatsoever, not even any female outfits that showed any cleavage. There are only 3 obscenities in the script (one each of the s-word, a**hole and one unfortunate interjection of Jesus” name in shock), and despite being served alcohol, the Dad doesn’t consume it.

The only issue that parents will have with their children is that there are a few scenes of intense action violence that involve a little bit of bloodshed, some moderate threat and peril, and one scene involving a car flipping over. One other scene shows a meteor shower destroying a gas station. Alton’s incidences involving his glowing eyes will also scare sensitive moviegoers. It’s these scenes that give the film a PG-13 rating. It does move somewhat slow at times, also, so I think this is best for ages 12 and up.

But, for Christians and media-wise viewers, this is one of the better choices in theaters nowadays. If you are a fan of sci-fi movies, then this is a must-see.
My Ratings: Moral rating: Better than Average / Moviemaking quality: 4½
Blake Wilson, age 21 (USA)

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