10 CLOVERFIELD LANE [2016]

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Directed by Dan Trachtenberg

Written by Josh Campbell (story, screenplay), Matthew Stuecken (story, screenplay), Damien Chazelle (screenplay)

Starring: John Goodman, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, John Gallagher Jr.


Michelle (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) has decided to split from her boyfriend, hurrying to get away. He begins to call and distract her from the road, and soon she has a serious car crash. She wakes up with a drip and needle in her arm, but on closer inspection her surroundings don’t seem right: the walls are made of concrete bricks, and her left leg is locked against the wall. This is no hospital. Due to a chemical attack on the US, she is deep underground with Emmett (John Gallagher Jr.) and Howard (John Goodman), who saved Michelle from the crash and owns the bunker. Michelle is sceptical at first about the attack on the US, and makes attempts to escape. Her mind however changes after she sees the effect of what is happening to a human outside the bunker. From here, claustrophobic fun ensues.

This is one of those films that deserves to be seen without much knowledge about the events of the film, so I’ll refrain from going any further.

I must say this film was not on my radar, and I am not sure how exactly it is related to the 2008 film Cloverfield. It seems like it is based in the same universe as the original movie, but apart from this the two films couldn’t be any different. Gone (thank you lord!) is the shaky found footage shooting style, save for one scene involving running, and in its place is some smooth, well executed cinematography that isn’t intrusive. Yes, I am still talking about the sequel(?) to Cloverfield!: the cinematography here is pretty great. What also had an impact a few times was the sound editing, the stakes of certain events seemed raised thanks to some nice tricks. On the other side of the coin though, the score was incredibly manipulative, and essentially gave away a few moments that would have had a bigger impact if the music weren’t there at all. The music used though is well composed, I liked the sound of it but I didn’t enjoy how it dictated certain scenes.

This is a movie based in a small space, meaning the dialogue and acting need to be on point to carry the attention of the viewers. Apart from a few glitches that can be forgiven, the script is decent, though not great, and the acting is for the most part solid all around. Mary Elizabeth Winstead overacts a little bit, but that is being picky; she does a good job considering the situations her character finds herself in. Gallagher Jr. is also great in a smaller role, but the real attraction here is John Goodman’s Howard. His awkward but hospitable nature is consistently in question, and he easily steals each scene he is in. I’ve never seen him in a role quite like this one, and unsurprisingly he nails it.


Unfortunately, the film suffers from a third act and ending that didn’t gel with this particular viewer, but it didn’t ruin the tense fun that is 4.5 beer - no beer topapparent beforehand. Somewhat surprisingly, this cousin of Cloverfield is a well shot and well acted tense thriller. If it had ended on a better note, I’d definitely give it a higher score.

Go see it! It is nothing like the original.

Four and a half beers out of of a sixer.

4.5/6

28 Comments on “10 CLOVERFIELD LANE [2016]

  1. I’m sure you wouldn’t do the dirty and spoil a film but just in case I won’t read further than the title. I have to wait a week for this but I’m super excited!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I only went over the first five minutes of the plot, in case you do want to read it haha. Its actually a lot shorter than a normal post of mine cos I didn’t cover the plot much at all.

      I hope you enjoy it when you get to see it!

      Liked by 1 person

      • No can do I’m afraid Jordan, I avoid spoilers like the plague and I do trust you, it’s just that I literally want to know nothing

        Like

  2. Thank you for this! I probably won’t hit the theater for this but this assured a rental! Plus, I’m hot for Winstead!

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I can’t WAIT to see this, I’m super excited for the movie. So jealous you’ve seen it already but thank you for not giving too much away 🙂 I’m very intrigued as to whether the horrors lay outside or inside the house and it looks great! Brilliant review Jordy 🙂 emmmm’kay.

    Like

      • Saw a trailer for this on Saturday and still so excited!!!!! I can’t WAIT to see this 🙂

        This movie and High Rise – can’t wait 😀

        Like

      • What?! Why not? 😦

        Literally can’t wait to see 10 Cloverfield Lane though, more excited for this than The Witch even 🙂

        Like

      • You’d be amazed at how -little- our cinemas have on offer. If it doesn’t make money in the US then its not likely to come here, unless it is backed by a big production company. High Rise isn’t on any ‘coming soon’ lists… =/

        Cloverfield Lane is great, Goodman hasn’t been better in years

        Like

  4. Nice review man. I couldn’t watch more than a couple of minutes of Cloverfield without looking away, the shaky cam just was so bad it really hurt the movie in my eyes. I’m not quite in any rush to watch this but I’ll probably end up catching it eventually.

    Like

    • It isn’t like that in any way. Its a completely different film, I’m not sure if its supposed to be a sequel or not, but there is no found footage BS here. Its actually a great, often tense claustrophobic thriller. I’d give it a chance, though perhaps after it comes out on DVD/online

      Like

  5. Hey Jordan, I see that you’ve read my friend Ted’s review. Well I never saw the first movie and to be honest w/ you I’m not all that interested in seeing this. I don’t know if I’d even rent it, ahah.

    Like

  6. Really good review and Im glad you didn’t go over much details in the plot. I enjoyed the first Cloverfield , but was very glad that this was a very different movie.

    Like

  7. Have not seen this yet, but I was no fan of the first film. As with The Blair Witch Project, the gimmick runs thin quickly. But you did write a great review in my opinion 🙂 Speaking of horror films, on my site cinematiccoffee I just posted a blog entry regarding my favorite films by horror filmmaker George A. Romero 🙂 Anyway, keep up the great work as always 🙂

    Like

  8. I’m not sure why J.J. insisted on linking the film via title because it looks like this pissed so many people…it looks very interesting and I do like Winstead and Goodman so I’ll definitely see this one

    Like

  9. Still waiting for this to release here in my neck of the woods, but its one of those movies that I’ve gotten slowly excited over due to the positive buzz.
    Nice review man. Looking forward to seeing this

    Like

  10. Pingback: TOP TEN FILMS OF 2016 | epileptic moondancer

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