Vicious Martians invade Earth and destroy everything
in their path, prompting humanity to fight back.
Mars Attacks! (1996)
Directed by Tim Burton
Written by Jonathan Gems
Starring Jack Nicholson, Glenn Close, Annette Bening,
Pierce Brosnan, Danny DeVito, Lukas Haas, Jim Brown,
Sarah Jessica Parker, Martin Short, Tom Jones, Rod Steiger,
Natalie Portman, Michael J. Fox, Sylvia Sidney, Pam Grier
Based on the trading card game by Topps Inc.
Say what you wish, but I consider Mars Attacks! to be one of Tim Burton's finest masterpieces. It's funny, thrilling, disturbing, and even dramatic. The cast is stellar, the plot is outrageous, and the effects are pretty good for 1996. There are so many familiar faces in this movie and most of them get blown away by Martian ray guns. Who doesn't love that?
Clearly, it's Jack Nicholson who owns this movie. He plays both the President and casino owner Art Land, two roles that will make you laugh. Martin Short is also great as Jerry Ross, the perverted press secretary, a role that is very much out of his usual wheelhouse. I also love Rod Steiger as the crazy, warmongering General Decker, whose comeuppance is one of the funniest (and disturbing) moments of the movie.
I've watched this film since I was a kid and I always find something new to like about it. It's one of the most unique films Burton ever did. It barely feels like one of his, but it's still a fun and crazy movie. I would say it's one of the best alien invasion films ever made.