Thursday, January 24, 2008

Cloverfield: Movie Review

You've seen the preview, right? Just imagine that for two hours. (Edit: to be accurate, it's 80 minutes.) Blair Witch meets Godzilla, end of story.

There are a couple cool aspects to the movie - it does an excellent job of capturing the suddenness in which disaster strikes, and the chaos and confusion for those caught in the middle. A few of the scenes of an empty, destroyed Manhattan are striking, but it's not enough to justify watching more than a few minutes.

I never cared about the characters for a second. I'm not sure why - maybe it was a lack of development, their dumb choices, or that I'm just a callous bastard - but without that connection to the characters, there was no drama. I wasn't scared or tense. Despite the choice to portray the action through a single, hand-held camera, Cloverfield lacked a sense of 'realness' to suck me in and make me a part of the action.

The stupid yammering of the camera-bearing Hud (HUD?) was only modestly less annoying than the constantly screaming girl in Blair Witch. After an hour of his inane commentary and bouncy camera action, my only interest was rooting for Hud to be eaten by the monstrosity. I won't spoil it and tell you if my wish was granted, but I'll say this: watching til the end isn't worth it either way.

JC, Deppen, Zor - what did you guys think?


At 8:10 AM, Anonymous Z0r said...


I really liked it - but would probably not watch it again - as watching it on the little screen would lose a lot of the impact.

I was glad the movie was only an 1 hour and 20 minutes. I don't think they could have stretched it much longer.

I loved the chaos and sense of confusion and claustrophobia in the beginning. This was definitely one of the best parts.

However, I wish the characters were a little more witty and not so bland. The "party" scene could have been used a little more effectively to help develop the characters.

All in all though, I liked this movie much better than your traditional Godzilla monster movie.

The helicopter scene at the end where stealth bombers are carpet-bombing the monster (and the monster grasping at one of the skyscrapers, scraping down floors of glass) was absolutely fantastic.

At 8:46 AM, Blogger sparrowlegs said...

Although there were some annoying parts, I enjoyed it for what it was -- A catastrophic (apocalyptic?) monster movie.

I agree with zOr. This movie must be seen on a big screen with a big sound system.

About 7 minutes into the 20 minute character development party I asked z0r "Where is the fucking monster?" The first 20 minutes (the trailer) was absolutely painful. I hated all of the characters too, so it was fun to see each of them...well, you know.

Sherry, the next time I tell you to go out and by yourself a slinky dress, this is what I want. OK?

At 3:24 PM, Anonymous deppen said...

I loved it. Having read no reviews and seeing the trailer once, I had no expectations. Zippo. Well - not exactly true. The 523 signs sprinkled around the theater had me expecting I was going to throw up.

I like monster movies and destruction. This delivered. I would have preferred more shots of the creature, but the brief glimpses were more powerful than a full-on monster shot.

I'm with z0r and sparrowlegs: the character development was way too long and lacking. I didn't give a crap about any of them. (I hated the name of the camera toting idiot: "HUD". Cute. You writers sure are witty. Was "Cameron Mann" too obvious? hmmm. Maybe in the sequel...)

See it. In the theater. Use the opening 20 minutes to eat your well buttered popcorn, suck down your soda and hit the bathroom before the fun starts.


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