Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Film Review: Cloverfield

The seventh film we watched from the ‘The Cutting Edge’ film programme was Cloverfield, which was directed by Matt Reeves and was released in 2008.

Cloverfield is your very typical monster movie only looked upon from a slightly different perspective than usually expected. In this film a simple video camcorder documents the events of the night an unknown monster goes rampant across Manhattan. Talking about the influences for Cloverfield, Roger Ebert says:

"Godzilla meets the Queasy-Cam in "Cloverfield," a movie that crosses the Monster Attacks Manhattan formula with "Blair Witch.""

Still the point arises that Cloverfield is just another monster movie similar to so many others done before. What makes it different though is its use of simplicity, particularly in the camera department, but in other areas too. And it is this simplicity that makes Cloverfield seem some completely new and unseen. Olly Richards writing for Empire magazine says:

"It’s a film that treads the well-worn steps of many monster movies past, but flits through them as if on virgin territory."

There is a great deal of mystery shrouded around this creatures sudden and rudely interruptive appearance which unfortunately are never explained or at least not fully. This appears to be kept on a need to know basis. The footage from the attack is broadcast to the world only showing the creature. It is almost as though the the government are keeping the vital information under lock and key, which makes this film somewhat of an annoyance as well as a pleasure. Richard Corliss writing for Time Magazine says:

"Instantly you have a million questions. By which I mean: three. 1) Where did the creature come from? (The Hudson River? Or the Arctic, thawed out by climate change and sent south on tidal currents? Possibly Hoboken?) 2) What event roused it from a snooze that may date back to the dinosaur era? (Godzilla's rampage across Japan, you'll recall, was the spawn of atomic bombs dropped there.) 3) What, exactly, the heck is it?"


Ebert, Roger (2008) Cloverfield
At: (Accessed on 23.02.11)

Richards, Olly (-
) Cloverfield

At: (Accessed on 23.02.11)

Corliss, Richard (2008
) Corliss on Cloverfield: The Blair Witch Reject

At:,8599,1704366,00.html (Accessed on 23.02.11)

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