10 Cloverfield Lane – Film Review

10 Cloverfield Lane – Film Review

Back in 2007 when the first trailer was attached to “Transformers” I was completely enthralled by what this film was. I was already a huge “Lost” fan and when I saw J.J. Abrams and Bryan Burke’s names on it, and that it was a Bad Robot Production — I was totally onboard. It looked like the American Kaiju film that I wanted that wasn’t Godzilla but something new and interesting. The story that it told was short and personal but interesting to say the least. Looking back I enjoyed the first “Cloverfield” but wanted more from it. When I saw that the there was a new “Cloverfield” trailer attached to “13 Hours” I was surprised that they had done it again and hidden another one under us.

It is so refreshing to see a big huge blockbuster film be announced so quickly and with a release date only 2 months away. With also knowing this film had a very small production budget with an even larger marketing one — I give Bad Robot high praise on pulling this off. We need more films like this and “Deadpool” that are low on budget — high concept genre flicks to diversify the market without overcrowding to the point where nothing makes money.

What I would describe 10 Cloverfield Lane as is a Science Fiction Mystery Thriller. I would also say that is indicative of the franchise as a whole. I would like to say that I hope this franchise continues in a “Twilight Zone” style with each entry being high concept ideas on a low budget that make them feel both like genre pictures but with high brow material. The only thing that should relate to each one is tone and its utilization of the SciFi genre. I wouldn’t like this film series to become like “American Horror Story” where it all starts off un connected and then is looped back to each other at the end.

NO! NO! No, no! No! Don’t open that door! You’re going to get all of us killed! – Howard

The performances in this film are spectacular. Mary Elizabeth Winstead is the type of leading female role we need more of. She is smart, ahead of the audience in what she should do next and is able to overcome challenges realistically. I hope more work goes her way to make her the leading actress she shows herself to be. John Goodman shines in his role as one of the most creepy characters he has ever played. Someone who you know as loveable and kind is a whole different kind of person in this film. Kudos for him for breaking the stereotype. John Gallagher Jr was a great round out to the cast with a caring kind role as Emmett. There wasn’t much for him to give to the film but he played into the mystery well and worked well off both leads without outshining.

The end of the film I felt that was earned because they reference things throughout the picture that showcase why it isn’t a cop out and bring the payoff to the picture. Behind the camera I would like to say that Dan Trachtenberg did a wonderful job on his first picture with all the close ups and long takes to make the picture breath and intensify the tension in the film. I hope to see more great stuff from him in the industry. Bear McCreary does a great job with being at the same level of Michael Giacchino with his scoring style.

I hope that there is another entry in the “Cloverfield” franchise that doesn’t take 8 years to get on screen!