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Cloverfield: Actually Worth the Hype! (Review)

 

Cloverfield Poster
 

 

Last night, I went out with some friends and saw an advanced screening of Cloverfield, the movie with the mysterious trailer that has had a lot of people talking. I myself have had discussions about the movie while sitting around with friends, and even on a nightly AIM chat some cosplayers that I partake in.

 

Would the movie be worth it? Or would it just be another over-hyped Hollywood flop?

 

I was excited as I walked into the theater, seeing everyone else abuzz with theories about the movie; what was really destroying Manhattan. We took our seats in the press area, thanks to some magic worked by Alyssa and myself, and settled in with our overpriced popcorn and rainbow twizzlers to wait for the movie to start.

 

After a few motivational and promotional talks from the people hosting the advanced screening and some yelling and screaming to try and get them to throw a t-shirt my way (apparently they didn’t think I was cute or enthusiastic enough for a t-shirt T_T), they finally announced that the movie would be starting.

 

The theater went black, and the ride began.

 

Trust me, ride is the only way to accurately describe this movie! The film is shot like Blair Witch, by a member of a small group of survivors from that initial attack at the beginning of the movie where the Statue of Liberty’s head come rolling down the street that we’ve all seen in the trailers. After emotionally drawing you in at the beginning of the movie with a party scene and some "flashback" clips, you’re thrown into nonstop action and suspense.

 

I loved it though. I thought it totally pulled you into the movie, made you feel like you were there, really experiencing the horrors going on around you. I caught myself several times turning my head to one side or another to "see what was going on over there."

 

I don’t want to spoil too much for you because that’s the fun of the movie; finding out what the hell is going on as your little group of courageous survivors does. Which sadly means that I can’t say too much.

 

The movie stars Lizzy Caplan, Jessica Lucas, TJ Miller, Michael Stahl-David (Mr. Hotty McHotterson), Mike Vogel and Odette Yustman as a group of survivors trying to live long enough to get out of New York.

 

At every turn you find out something new, another piece of the puzzle that helps clue you in to the bigger picture. But even then, they leave you hanging in the end, you have to decide what happened for yourself. Did we win? Did we lose? Is there hope? Will it happen again? Maybe not everyone’s cup of tea, but I enjoy a movie that makes you use your imagination just a little bit!

 

The special effects were pretty damn cool… Big explosions, spider-shrimp (you’ll know what I mean *gulp*), buildings falling to the ground. All of it pretty well executed.

 

There was very little music in the movie since they were going for that realistic edge. It really wasn’t needed though. It just makes the creepy scenes even creepier because there are no musical "hints" to tip you off when something is going to happen.

 

The acting was pretty spot-on as well. I could really believe that these people were there, going through all of this. There were a few parts of unbelievable stupidity that was mostly just to keep the plot going, but those can be easily forgiven.

 

Uh-Oh...

 

The only thing about the movie is that not all of the emotional points seem to connect. Maybe it was just me though… During the lovey-dovey sad or romantic parts of the movie, there seemed to be too much else going on for you to really focus on that one thing and give your heart to it. There were a few parts that almost got me teary-eyed though. And there was a freakin awesome kiss scene near the end of the movie! When you see it, you’ll know what I mean and have a little fan-gasm =)

 

I loved the random bits of humor the dim-witted camera man threw in every once and a while to lighten the mood. Without them, the movie would have been far too heavy, and not as fun of an experience.

 

I think this really will become a modern sci-fi masterpiece and cult classic. The people making the movie knew enough to borrow things that have worked for other movies in the past, and mush them all together to make something new and unique.

 

If this movie is any sort of foreshadowing as to how the rest of the movies this year will be, we’re in for an awesome year at the box office!

 

I think I’ll give Cloverfield four and a half Statue of Liberty Heads out of five… GO SEE THIS MOVIE WHEN IT COMES OUT FRIDAY! But don’t take your kids, maybe a bit too scary for them.

 

Oh, and stay until after the credits, but be very quiet, or you’ll miss it 😉

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