First of all, lets not kid ourselves, the way Netflix promoted this film was incredible. Release the trailer during the Superbowl, then drop the film straight afterwards, a masterpiece of marketing, who knows what this’ll do to the future of marketing. But was this a strategy to avoid bad critical reviews?
So, personally, I didn’t like the first Cloverfield movie. I didn’t like the handheld ‘found footage’ style it went for and I didn’t really like the characters, what I did like however was the big monster. But for 10 Cloverfield Lane in 2016, I loved it, so I’d already had a mixed bag with this franchise. With this film however, I had some real fun with it.
A lot of critics don’t seem to like it, and I just can’t understand why. I’ll give you some pros, and of course some cons, so lets crack on.
(*WARNING* Some Spoilers ahead, go see the film on Netflix before reading on)
The first pro is the science. I really enjoyed the ‘oooooh’ moment when you realise that the events you are seeing happen are what caused the monster/aliens in the previous two Cloverfield movies.
So the way this film explains it is that in the future the human race is suffering from an energy crisis so they create a particle accelerator in space in order to try and find a sustainable energy sauce. However, things go wrong, and the space station starts to experience some weird, spooky stuff as well as monsters being released on earth.
The science behind this is that the accelerator broke a hole in the multi-verse allowing different beings and creatures to spill into different universes and different times which is why there is a big monster destroying New York in Cloverfield, and why there are Aliens attacking in 10 Cloverfield Lane.
The second pro for this film is its genuine creepy moments. There are some times in the film that genuinely made me wince. Two moments stand out. The first being a scene where the crew find another mysterious crew member in a wall with power cables stuck into her and going through her. And the second moment is when one of the crew members eyes starts to roll about in his head without his control (weird right?). Overall there aren’t that many creepy moments but there is some good body horror-esque shots and they work really well.
The final pro is Chris O’Dowd. For a film that is from a franchise which is known to be quite dark and gritty. O’Dowd brings a slight charm and lightheartedness to proceedings, especially when his arm gets cut off and starts to move around of its own accord.
Now for the cons. And I do really only have one. It is quite clear that this wasn’t originally a Cloverfield film and that the references were added in as an afterthought. For example, the crew themselves never call the space station ‘Cloverfield’ only the people on Earth do. And the only other time you see ‘Cloverfield’ mentioned is on a news report at the beginning of the movie. However, unlike a lot of critics, I don’t think this brings down the movie as a whole.
Despite this con, the movie is definitely worth a watch, especially when the original Cloverfield monster bursts out of a cloud layer at the end of the film.
I am very excited to see where this franchise goes and what they plan on bringing to the table. More aliens? More giant monsters? Or something completely different? Whatever it is I’m ready for it.
The Cloverfield Paradox: 3/5