Rafael Jovine’s review published on Letterboxd:
After having found major success by portraying aliens in a likeable and friendly way, Steven Spielberg tries out to go rogue and dark with some very uneven success.
On one hand, Tom Cruise is the real star of the show. While his character is flawed, the fact we see him sorta trying to find redemption amonst the worst case scenario was great to see and a journey to take. Plus, we get to see him delivering on some great stunts and running his way through different scenarios.
The direction by Spielberg here was often a solid one. Those long takes, especially for the action scenes like in the opening and on the avenue, helped making these scenes in particular often very thrilling. The design of the aliens and the way he directed everything about them made them come as often menacing. All of this feels are enhanced by a fantastic sound mixing and design.
Now, by this point I thought it was all a coincidence, but now I am starting to see some patterns. What is it with the glossy cinematography? At first I thought it was to come with some vibes or something, but here it was kind of weird. In addition, Williams score was fine but at times it felt odd. Like the scene at the very end, that was supposed to be like a happy ending and instead we got a pretty tense and dark piece of music. I was expecting some Bughuul to pop up at the very end.
But the real issue with the movie and while I don't think it fully worked for me and I will dare to say for many were the kids. Now, Dakota in my books is one of the greatest child actors of our generation, but here she was simply ANNOYING AF. I could make an exception with Chatwin because he was supposed to be like the teenage angsty kid, but they were both some scumbags I simply wished for Cruise's Ray let them die.
All in all, while its plagued with many flaws and many story elements never fully work, it still a good Spielberg movie that worth a watch....
Though I still prefer the Scary Movie 4 rendition.