Right off the top and sight unseen, I’m intrigued by David Koepp’s decision to write Tom Cruise’s War of the Worlds character as “kind of a jerk.” Ray Ferrier is described in the Newsweek article as “a divorced, blue-collar guy more interested in fast cars than in his young daughter (Dakota Fanning) and teenage son (Justin Chatwin). But then huge alien tripods begin destroying everything in their path, and Ray finds himself on the run with his kids.” Cruise, says Koepp, has “played so many characters that are capable and cocky, and I thought it would be fun to write against that [and make him into] someone whose life didn’t pan out the way he thought it would.”