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10 Cloverfield Lane

The Monsters are Due on Cloverfield Lane

By Courtland Hopkins

10 Cloverfield Lane has the markers of a claustrophobic thriller where the audience is trapped with the heroine. The film follows the story of a woman named Michelle (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), she is in a car accident and is taken into a bomb shelter by a mysterious man named Howard (John Goodman) to protect her from a worldwide catastrophe. Soon they are joined by a local named Emmet (John Gallagher Jr). The questions swirled in my mind as I hear loud concussions and mysterious sounds coming from the outside. Is the world really ending as Howard and Emmet proclaim? Or has Michelle run across a psychopath keeping her in the bunker for his own sick ends? It is hard to talk more about the plot without completely spoiling it.

I have always enjoyed Winstead’s performances in movies 2011 version of the Thing and Death Proof. John Goodman turns in an excellent performance as Howard. I got a sense of menace and well as compassion for him as the movie went along. The filmmaking is solid. The story is solid as well but I think the actors and the premise make the movie work. The ending is something else altogether.

Ten Cloverfield Lane bears little resemblance to the film it gets its namesake but if there is a Cloverfield franchise, it will be unique in the fact that all the films in it take place in this strange universe; all could have different stories involving a alien invasion told through the eyes of ordinary people.

This movie reminded me of a mix of the War of the Worlds (The book) and Misery. It’s a combination of the two terrors found in these types of stories, the end of the world and the madman let loose. I watched this movie and was thrilled. I liked feeling the mystery, the tensions and the terror just like Michelle in the movie. The most appealing part of the story is where our heroine experiences a genuine transformation through the course of the story. She is on a strange adventure that is filled with all kinds of terrors and decisions. I think the ending was a perfect denouement to the story. The ending of the movie reminded me of the superb ending of the Terminator, and ending to a movie where one feels as if the story is not over but the character is free from the plot, leaving the larger story to be finished in our imaginations or discussing it at Denny’s after we leave the theatre. I say see it.

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Posted in All Reviews, By Courtland Hopkins.

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