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Movie Review: Cloverfield

This film has had the biggest opening in January ever. This film is definitely not what you would expect it to be. This film exceeded my expectations in every fashion and then some. The film is produced by JJ Abrams and directed by Matt Reeves. Now when we look at the director that would be something to shy away from – I mean come on, the guy directs the seasons of the show Felicity – and we are expected to go see a film that is supposed to be a thriller? No wonder people have their doubts about this movie. A recorded event known as the “Cloverfield” incident is graciously showed to the public by the government to further inform us of what happened in New York City. It’s amazing roller coaster ride of a story and if you let yourself appreciate it for what it is, you won’t be disappointed.

PROS of the FILM
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Where do I begin? Honestly the best part of the whole thing is the story/characters and how involved the viewer can get with them. I felt for each character of the film and wanted them to succeed in escaping from the menacing monster that lay waste to the city of New York. Especially the camera guy “Hud” if it wasn’t for his performance and dialogue behind the camera I probably wouldn’t have liked this movie as much as I did.Yet, let me get back to why this film is great. First and foremost – you have to understand that it’s not meant to be some action packed popcorn flic that you would expect Will Smith to star in or something to that extent. This is meant to be a video that the government has found and is “letting” you watch so that you are given some knowledge of what the “Cloverfield” incident was and what happened etc. I mean come on, the film is only an hour and a half long – why would it be anything more than that? I’ve heard people complain about the acting and that it was over the top, and that some of the actresses didn’t seem “scared” in an honest fashion … and I say shut up. How would you act if you had a monster out of a science fiction novel coming straight at you and this is shot as if it were real. Seriously, I wish people would just let themselves go every now and then and go to the movies to be entertained and actually get involved in what’s going on rather than just judging it at the door. The acting was superb, the story was even better, and the CG…oh my the CG was probably some of the best CG if not the best CG I’ve ever had the pleasure of seeing on the big screen. There isn’t one time in the whole movie that I said to myself, “man that looks so fake” except for maybe one instance when you get a straight on shot at the monster itself … otherwise it’s just amazing how everything looks as if it’s happening right there smack in the middle of NYC.

CONS of the FILM
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The one con to this movie that I can come up with is that it might hit the hearts of those who suffered tremendously in 9/11. I’m kind of surprised that both the producer and director didn’t really sympathize much about this because there are some blatant scenes in the movie that look like a re-creation right out of the footage of 9/11. This is a little hard to watch at times and can be really hurtful to some people. Another con might be to some people the camera movement. For some reason I was not bothered by it at all, and maybe because I was so into what was happening and what lay around the next corner but I never once got a head ache or felt dizzy from any of it. I’ve heard complaints that it’s even more unstable than the Blair Witch, which is bull to me, but if you need proof, go see it yourself. I personally think that the camera work is brilliant and adds to the realism of the entire thing. Because I try not to discriminate and give a fair opinion, I’ll also mention the fact that the movie just ends. There is no concrete finish to any of it. The tape just stops and you get no answers. Some people might be infuriated by this and just see it as a huge con of the movie, but seriously if we are meant to take it as it was meant to be viewed, then that’s how it should be. A blockbuster movie would end, and try to sum up everything and give us a concrete answer or solution to what was happening … but this was NOT meant to be a movie – it’s meant to be a tape of a recorded event! UGH!

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As I’ve said, this movie exceeded my expectations and actually amazed me. It really shows what someone can do with technology today in the film industry and what can be brought to the table with some great story telling. So, if you can stand some shaky camera movement, and can avoid being too traumatized by the 9/11 references then please, do yourself a favor and go see this movie. It’s amazing.

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About Lucas Tetrault:

Lucas Tetrault is an Art Director who is responsible for the concept, design, direction, and end result of advertising, print, web, social, mobile, ui/ux and multimedia materials. When he isn't working at CS Kern, Lucas spends most of his time with his wife Celeste and their son Jacik. He might spend any other available time at the computer, watching movies, fixing his car, writing blog posts, sketching/drawing, messing with his phone or a plethora of other things. Lucas can't thank his family and friends enough for all of their love and support towards everything he does and has accomplished.

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