- John Goodman is a frightening, force of nature!
- Makes ordinary situations scary as hell (you think board games are boring? Think again)
- One of the more tense movies I've seen in theaters in a long time
- Plenty of twists and turns that turn the tension up to a solid 10
- A subtle nod to Super 8 (a film also produced by Bad Robot)
- Very unpredictable, which is always a great trait for a movie to possess
- A good original score
- The final image really does set up endless possibilities (which will most likely tie into the original film a bit more)
- If you are a fan of mystery movies this should certainly keep you guessing as the minutes fly by
- I still think attaching the word 'Cloverfield' to the title was a cheap gimmick to sell tickets
- An uncountable amount of close up shots of actors faces
- The final 15 minutes switches ideas and leaves a sour taste in the mouth (this one hurt a lot)
- Shaky-cam at the end (it's very brief why totally avoidable)
I'll get this out of the way early, I firmly believe using the word 'Cloverfield' in the title was solely to sell tickets. Now you can infer this in two ways, one being that the movie isn't sci-fi and there are no monsters/aliens so it makes no sense to mention the two in the same sentence. Or two, there are monsters/aliens but the story itself doesn't relate to the original film. I won't tell you which one it is, the point is, there was no real need to draw comparison to 2008's Cloverfield. This movie could have been its own thing (and it probably would have been better for it).
As for this movie, it's pretty damn great! John Goodman is fantastic here, he's already got the body size to scare any sensible human being but his acting is certainly on point. He is a walking, talking, tension radiating, thug. At any single moment he can snap and the movie plays with this notion a lot! And to balance that out, Mary Elizabeth Winstead is the likable, vulnerable damsel in distress if you will. Together the make a great duo for a very, very engrossing cat and mouse game.
Outside the praise of Goodman, it is the script that shines. There are some serious 'oh my god' moments that take things to the next level. Just when you think everything has been solved, the movie throws you another curveball to keep you guessing. Once the first 'bomb' (not literally) is dropped, the movie goes from a mild thriller to a bone shaking puzzler. It's at this point of no return that the movie is most enjoyable as we watch the characters piece together their situation and we just sit back and watch the mayhem take over. I hope I'm not over selling anything but the movie really does keep you on your toes!
10 Cloverfield Lane really came out of nowhere and that's always nice to see. It's certainly reminiscent of Joel Edgarton's The Gift. Not story wise, but both are a directorial debut featuring a mystery/thriller narrative. And they both received good reviews and critic response (eerily similar scores if you really break it down). It's really a pleasure to have modest expectations for a film, only to be blown away. This is one of those films, as long as you go into the movie knowing it's only a 'blood relative' to Cloverfield and nothing more.