Andy and Wend went to see the much hyped and eagerly awaited Cloverfield and the local cineplex, was it worth the wait and what did attack New York read on to find out...
Well for anyone who has been living under a rock Cloverfield has been marketed to the public for what feels like a eternity giving us fleeting glimpses of something ravaging New York and tossing the Statue of Liberties head along a road and causing all sorts of explosion related ruckus, the plot has been kept firmly under wraps without any leaks or spoilers appearing online before the films has been released only to aggravate the build up and questions on films sites about the films content.
To say I was dreading and looking forward to Cloverfield would be a understatement, having been drawn in by the viral marketing campaign my excitement at seeing the film was pretty high, what was attacking New York? did the creature drop lice from it as rumoured, could it actually be Cthulhu rising from Ry’leh ?
Warning this part will give away some parts of the story so stop reading now if you don't want any minor plot spoilers!
Well it’s a simple plot a group of thirty somethings get together to say farewell to a character who is leaving to move to Japan, half way through the party what appears to be a earth quake shakes the apartment and we see on TV a oil tanker has capsized in the harbour , the characters go onto the roof to get a better view they see a he explosion and the film then kicks of into horror monster movie territory.
Much chasing about, destruction and a few scares and a death or two await out intrepid heroes of the movie.
What really makes Cloverfield stand out from many other films of this type is we are only given the information and scenes from the viewpoint of the characters, as the movie consists of a video tape recovered after the incident from the camera Hud was using to film the party and later on the unfolding drama. As the story unfolds no explanation is ever given to how the creature came to attack NY or where it came from and to be honest it’s a refreshing change, a couple of theories are forwarded in the film but nothing concrete leaving you the viewer as much in the dark as the characters.
One of the aspects I was worried about with Cloverfield was the creature, would we get to see it in all it’s glory, how big is it, what is it, and so on, let me tell you we get to see it a lot in the film and it’s a pretty mean son of a bitch, the first real view of it in all it’s glory is when the army infantry unleash everything they have at it while trying to evacuate the civilians.
I don’t really want to spoil things for those of you who haven’t yet seen the movie but this critter is immense dwarfing anything I had seen before. Being recreated digitally (isn’t everything now?) they meshed it seamlessly with the live action actors.
A lot of people have complained about the shaky camera work in Cloverfield, but I found it didn’t detract from the film and actually added to the films chaotic feeling, I’m pretty sure if I was trying to record a 400 foot tall monster with a camcorder it would be a lot more unstable then the efforts we are presented with. There are some interesting cuts as the tape being replayed sometimes flicks back to one of the characters weekend breaks, a interesting way of breaking the tension after some of the more menacing scenes.
One fantastic aspect of the film I really enjoyed was the soundtrack, with a complete lack of music to build drama we are left with just sound effects, which really are top notch, from the creaking and groaning of the collapsing sky scrapers, the scuttling footsteps of the bugs in the subway to the almighty bass tone rib rattling roar of the creature. It made the film feel more like a real life documentary than some Hollywood affair.
Overall I would recommend everyone should go see Cloverfield it’s a action packed roller coaster of a ride and a different take on the monster attack story we have all become so used to, the running time maybe short but the film packs a lot of story into those 90 minutes.
Roll on the DVD release !
- Different take on the monster story
- Tense action packed thrillerr
- Great effects
- It’s to short
- Unstable camera work not to everyone’s taste