The Cloverfield Paradox

Posted: February 7, 2018 in Movies
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If someone had told me on Sunday night I would be seeing the brand new Cloverfield movie the following day I would not have believed them. In a shocking and surpriseing move Netflix aquired The Cloverfield Paradox from Paramount. During the Super Bowel on Sunday night the film’s trailer revealed it to the world and then announced it would be ready to watch on Netflix after the big game. What a move. Fans of the franchise went into a frenzy of excitment. The reaction has been mixed. Some feel the film was seriously lacking, while others saw potential in what the film was trying to do but overall The Cloverfield Paradox does pale slightly in comparison to Cloverfield and 10 Cloverfield Lane.

The film is directed by Julius Onah and written by Oren Uziel. Like the film that came before it this did not begin life as a Cloverfield movie. Originally it was titled God Particle. There were even test screenings held during that time when the film had no connections to the Cloverfield universe. It’s facinating stuff. J.J. Abrams and his company Bad Robot saw the potential in God Particle to fit into the Cloverfield universe and so the film was re-worked to make it work. It does for the most part. I don’t think it’s awful by any stretch of the imagination.

There is some boss science fiction stuff in here that gets you thinking and what’s most shocking is the film answers quite a few of the big questions from the Cloverfield series to date. In fact, in my opinion, it answers more than it probably should. When the film is finished you’ll know exactly why everything that happened in Cloverfield and 10 Cloverfield Lane came to be. You’ll also get an idea of where the series will go in the future. FYI Cloverfield 4 has already been filmed and test screened and is due for release later this year.

The plot of the movie – no spoilers – takes place on a space station orbiting the Earth. Scientist’s and an experimental partical accellerator. That’s all you’re getting. Things get out of hand. As you’d expect! All of that stuff in space is great. The characters are okay, some more so than others, but that’s down to the writing letting some down and not the actors who all do good work. The opening of the film is great too and the theory of this ‘Cloverfield Paradox’ is explained really well, maybe too well. What doesn’t quite work out is the more on the nose connections to previous Cloverfield movies. Basically the Earth set sequences, bar one which is AMAZING, seem flat and clearly added in at a later time. If more work had of gone into those scenes I think it would have made the film stronger. The same can be said of the film’s last act. Characters just get tied up abruptly and it’s predictable for a series known for taking chances and risks.

To sum it up I think The Cloverfield Paradox is a decent, if flawed, entry into the Cloververse. It can’t have been easy on Onah and Uziel to have their film re-worked. The use of practial sets and effects goes a long way too and I always appreciate that stuff. I just wish the film had not explained some mysteries so clearly and spent a bit more time on the characters.

 

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