JM ordered up this dvd, and I picked it out of a lineup. Plotwise, the film is Godzilla meets War of the Worlds, and stylewise it is Blair Witch Project meets 28 Days Later. Both of those last two scared the bejeezus out of me, so. Oh yes, and there are an awful lot of 9/11-ish details too: the mass exodus via the Brooklyn Bridge, papers floating after major explosions, dust tunneling between buildings. Oh, and terror. There's a lot of that too.
Cloverfield, as you Lost lovers may know, was made by Lost creator J.J. Abrams, and I can see the resemblance--the characters never exit the way they enter, very beautiful long-haired women, always some sort of military presence.
The plot is basically this: a bunch of twentysomethings are having a goodbye party in a cool, huge, exposed-brick type place with a socially awkward fellow making the rounds with a digital handheld when something attacks Manhattan!
The beginning of the film tells us that the recording was found in the area "formerly known as Central Park," a sure bet that things do not go all that well for the party-goers. The only thing novel about this film is the way the recording is dubbed over another recording of a happier day (about a month earlier) when the party's guest of honor made it with one of the really beautiful women. So on occasion there's a user error in the recording of horror night, and bits of that other day pop up. The splice-y effect is rather jarring, and it's a nifty way to layer plots. Again, not all that new, unless it is considered in the camera-as-character vein. Then it's pretty interesting.
Oh, and there's an awful lot going on in this film with what Ali G likes to call techmology. Those twentysomethings sure do like to send text messages and capture shots of tentacular jurrasicky monsters with their cell cameras. So maybe it wasn't that good, but I didn't get bored for a minute.
If you've seen Cloverfield and hated it or loved it or (like me) didn't feel all that strongly one way or the other, you'll probably like the South Park spoof. Go here for a clip.
And why the hell is this movie called Cloverfield? I gather it's the name of the monster, but no one knows that in the movie, because no one really knows WTF is going on in the movie.
Cloverfield is rated PG-13 for "violence, terror, and disturbing images."