10 Cloverfield Lane – Tense

I don’t think anybody expected to see a follow up to 2008’s Cloverfield and in fairness, despite the name connection there’s little else to draw on. But that’s not a bad thing. Cloverfield put Matt Reeves fairly and squarely on the map, demonstrating his directing chops and inducing all kinds of motion-sickness in the process. Of course, Mr Reeves has gone on to cement his reputation with the outstanding Let Me In and the franchise-busting Dawn of the Planet of the Apes, with Cloverfield being a slightly smaller footnote to his burgeoning career.

10 Cloverfield Lane surfaced with barely a whisper just a few weeks before release and is poles apart from its progenitor. There have been indications from its producer – none other than J J Abrams, who was also a producer for Cloverfield – that further instalments may come our way, so an overarching narrative pulling all the strands together could clear the muddied waters “connecting” these two films.

It’s always a pleasure to see John Goodman on screen and 10 Cloverfield Lane provides the rare opportunity for Mr Goodman to take a leading role. While his stature may allow him to physically dominate any film – even with smaller roles (see The Gambler) – this extended screen time allows us to bask in his obvious talents. His character, Howard, is an interesting creation, struggling to cope with the interlopers within his sanctum, a person with inner turmoil who must exhibit restraint to survive.

Said “interlopers” are Michelle, played by Mary Elizabeth Winstead (Scott Pilgrim vs. the World) and Emmet, played by John Gallagher Jr. (The Newsroom). Michelle provides the audience with a focal point, asking the type of questions we hope we would, while Emmet is just thankful to have been “rescued”. This three-hander, played out in a single environment, manages to rack up the tension and stay half a step ahead of the viewer. It’s an intriguing premise played out over 103 minutes and deserves to succeed. I don’t wish to say any more about 10 Cloverfield Lane as it should be seen fresh, without any preconceived notions or knowledge of plot points. Suffice to say, Dan Trachtenberg has created a very nice piece of cinema on his directorial debut – it’s well worth your while taking a trip to the flix to see it.

Thank you for reading 🙂


Under the Radar

It doesn’t really happen in Hollywood any more. The advent of the internet probably put paid to that. But there’s still one stalwart of the value of secrecy. To that end, it was no surprise to see J J Abrams name attached to what looked like a pseudo-follow up to Matt Reeves 2008 monster-on-the-loose offering, Cloverfield. Of course the real surprise was the existence of such a movie in the first place. 10 Cloverfield Lane is to be released on 11th March in the US, with no date yet confirmed for the UK. A whole film, a kind-of sequel to a well received monster movie, has been made without “us” knowing. I love that! Take a gander:

John Goodman is always good value for money – his appearances in Community are priceless – together with Mary Elizabeth Winstead – Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Killer and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World to name but two star turns – and John Gallagher Jr. – whose work in The Newsroom was outstanding – form an interesting triumvirate. We won’t have to wait long to find out.


Thank you for reading 🙂

It’s been a while

Well, I’m going to start the New Year with wholly good intentions. I’ve decided to make my film reviews a bit more brief and we’ll see how it goes.

In the mean time, if you’ve read my blog before – and thank you if you have – you’ll know I have a penchant for poster art and character posters.

What better place to kick off my posts than with a few from Star Wars The Force Awakens. Enjoy.

Thank you for reading 🙂