It was sort of 9/11-meets-Dawson's-Creek, mostly disposable learning-disabled 25-somethings with impossible jobs and apartments, tussling with spider-dogs and wrestling with their feelings. The best part of the movie is Lizzy Caplan, who channels Zooey Deschanel for her portrayal of Marlena. It may be unoriginal but I always say the more Zooey there is out there the better.
I will give J.J. Abrams this: the first fifteen minutes had me flashing back pretty hard. Now that we know what New York looks like in flames in real life I suppose it is going to be much easier for filmmakers to simulate it realistically onscreen.
We need a sequel where we meet the monster's extended network of college friends, all of whom use NokiaTM brand cell phones exclusively.