Here I come back today with Cloverfield, one of the most awaited movies of the beginning of the year according to the buzz existing on the web after the trailers had been released. Buzz so big that it forces producer J.J. Abrams to keep the movie work name for its release (it was supposed to become Greyshot).
IMDb wrote: Cloverfield (2008)
Director: Matt Reeves
Genre: Action / Sci-Fi / Thriller
Runtime: 85 min
Some will say that I miss a very cool thing but yet I've never seen one single episode of the tv series Lost, which made me having no special excitement or awes regarding the fact that the name of J.J. Abrams, creator of the series, was behind Cloverfield. But like many others, I had been very intrigued about what the hell was going on in the trailers. Despite a 3 days stagnating headache I then rushed with Liewen, absinthe, Lord and Nau to a French premiere last Friday.
Hopefully I discovered then that my brain still had some kind of "survival reflexes" as my headache decrease frankly in the first minutes of the movie. Otherwise I guess my head would have exploded and, actually, Liewen was quite sick at the end of the movie. I completely understand the following warning which can be found in some movie theaters.
Due to the filming method used for "Cloverfield", guests viewing this film may experience side effects associated with motion sickness similar to riding a rollercoaster
Take this warning seriously and do not sit yourself at the first rank in front of a huge movie theater screen or I assure you you'll get out pretty ill.
But this technical is also the force of the movie, mixing different genres. First, the obvious reference is Godzilla, the Japanese BIG monster ravaging the city which actually inspired the movie according to J.J. Abrams who said in interviews that the idea of the movie came to him seeing his son playing with a Godzilla toy while they were in Japan.
Then the second reference Â everybody thinks about is of course The Blair Witch Project which I had personally found amazingly boring but had brought some novelty in its treatment non the less for those who had never seen the great (but quite disturbing) C'est Arrivé Près de Chez Vous.
Indeed the movie is supposed to be shot all along by a digital camera hold most of the time by Hud Platt, best pal of Rob Hawkins supposed to leave New-York for a very interesting "vice-president" job in Japan. At the surprise leaving party Hud is asked to take the camera in order to record all guests' farewell message to Rob.
The 20 first minutes of Cloverfield are totally dedicated to the characters. During this first part of the movie we get to know them and learn about some little love affairs between them and so on. The party starts to become a bit boring actually when suddenly a sinister scream is heard and the electricity is cut for a few seconds.
Everyone rushes to the TV reporting an earthquake in Manhattan and then goes to the roof to see a huge explosion forcing them to run down because of the burning projections.
Hud holds the camera all along and from now on decides to keep it in order to deliver a testimony about what is going on. Cloverfield really starts...
And from now another reference quickly comes to mind, and none the least one: Alien. Here the characters we are following are as lost and confused than the Nostromo guys dealing with the alien. Only the scale changes. The Nostromo becomes Manhattan; the alien become a 25 storeys monster (I invite only those who have seen the movie to click here and see a concept art of the monster).
Sadely for them, only the scale of the characters we follow doesn't change, even if we could count the military presence as a serious improvement
The important thing is that they don't know what is going on. The confusion brings a lot to the atmosphere. The only source of information they have are the rumours from the scary crowds, the surpassed soldiers or the tv which, from time to time is also filmed by Thud, giving us this way some more information from others' images.
I've really liked that movie which counts very few necessary lenghts at is begining in order to not leave us breathe after in a total confusion. Don't expect to have much replies to your questions during the movie as these reply can only come after the events. For now we are on the front, where immediate action is required for survival.
I've seen on the web, and also anakinfett told it to me, that there was a possible link with the tv series Lost. As said before I'm not at all qualified to get in this right now due to my total ignorance of the series. If there is a link, it might give me the motivation required to see it though. But actually I don't need replies to appreciate the movie (I'm a Lynch fan, I'm used to get out cinema with a lot of unanswered questions ).
If there has to be a sequel, I'd prefer to have another point of view of the same events with another cameraman than a sequel uncovering to many things and preventing us to ever see the first movie the same way...
The form brings a lot to Cloverfield and if you are sure to not become sick you really should see it. It's hard to mark it with this element cause the best point of the movie is also is worst for the stomach...
Anyway I go for a 5/6. You'd have been warned