Movie review: Cloverfield

[Blu-ray | DVD]

So I watched Cloverfield way back when, but wanted to see it on blu-ray so hit up the Netflix to watch it again in HD. I wasn’t particularly fond of this movie the first time I saw it. I mean to say, I didn’t particularly care about this movie the first time I saw it. I can’t say a second viewing, HD or not, has changed my mind on it.

I think Cloverfield is commendable in the same way M. Night Shyamalan’s Signs [Blu-ray | DVD] was commendable. But it also suffers the same major problem. Both of the movies were so scary dealing with the unknown. Signs was particularly effective with it. Cloverfield did as much as it could with the concept given that it was a godzilla flick. But the point is, and this has been much covered before me, the less I actually saw of the monsters in the respective movies, the scarier they were. I was unbelievably disappointed when I saw the alien in Signs. And I certainly was disappointed when I saw the full monster in Cloverfield, as well as the little bugs.

I know there is no way to go without showing either. If they hadn’t been shown there would’ve been huge outcry. “The largest macguffin ever!” “What kind of monster movies doesn’t show the monster?!” But I really feel seeing both really took away from the suspense and fear the movies built up. J.J. Abrams produced Cloverfield. And I really wish he had pushed Matt Reeves, the director, to take a pseudo-Mission: Impossible III [Blu-ray | DVD] tactic. In that movie, J.J. Abrams had Ethan Hunt chase down “The Rabbit’s Foot.” In the movie, it’s is the macguffin. But it is never explained. What it is, what it does, why we should be worried it’s in terrorists’ hands. Nothing. But who cares. That it is there is the reason for worry. Do we really need to know all the minute details?

I think this would’ve worked great in Signs or Cloverfield. We know NYC is being ravaged by some huge monster (by the way, I really disliked the seeming from nowhere insect monsters, there had to be a better way to introduce other scary things than that idea). Do we really want to see it? Do we really NEED to see it?

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