Friday, October 19, 2018

31 Days of Dread--Day 19

Cloverfield, 2008; written by Drew Goddard; directed by Matt Reeves

This is the film that kicked off a three-part franchise (and counting, some of which have been more successful than others), caused audiences to complain about motion sickness and inspired critics to draw comparisons to the trauma of 9/11.

And it's worthy of all that. Still.

The story should be familiar to anyone who's seen at least one Japanese city reduced to rubble by an atomic-era monster. Only this update sets the action in New York City and employs the found-footage technique that still hadn't been done to death by 2008.

After ten years, Cloverfield hasn't lost its ability to thrill, surprise and even shock. (Also, deliver the occasional bit of vertigo, even on a contemporary flat-screen.) Especially during the last 15 minutes or so, which boldly eschew Hollywood's insistence on a happy ending despite all the odds and instead go right where they've been going all along. 

Cloverfield is available on streaming rental.

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