Sunday, January 20, 2008

"It's a terrible thing!"

Saw "Cloverfield" Saturday night. I don't know, lambkins. Art Boy absolutely loved it but it left me feeling pretty let down. The premise is fantastic, and I love a monster movie as much as the next girl, but once the monster attack is under way the movie started to go thin for me.

I wasn't particularly thrilled by any of the running/escape sequences. My thinking is that a large monster is probably very easy to escape from if you can stay out of its way. (The best scares come from the parasites that drop off it, but after their initial attack, they mostly stop being an issue. Why?) The scariest part of a monster attack on Manhattan, I would think, would be the crowds and the sense of mass panic. But somehow everyone escapes the island very quickly, leaving our protagonists alone in the city. And they aren't all that fleshed out. I didn't care about them or their little romances or whatever. People who run from monsters for hours in high-heeled shoes are not real people. I wanted this movie to be either really smart or to be a great thrill ride, but it never quite made it to either one.

But the premise: wow. It never stops being great. I love the gimmick and I love the cinema-verite effect. I love entire shots carefully framed around being entirely accidental. I love the shots of crowds holding up their cellphones to take pictures of the Statue of Liberty's head. Basically, I love the trailer for this movie. The movie didn't stand a chance of living up to it.

Oddly, it got me super-excited for Romero's "Diary of the Dead," which is exactly the same premise but with zombies. Is anything not vastly improved by tacking on "with zombies"? No.

*I'm also irked by the tagline for this movie. It's not somehow more horrifying to say "Some thing" than "Something"; either way, it's a "thing," right? Art Boy disagrees, but then he really liked the movie. Also, it's a misleading tagline as it implies more of a mystery than is featured in the movie -- we don't know if it found us or if we woke it up with a foghorn or created it with a atomic tests or what. Anyway, Art Boy won't talk to me about this movie anymore.

1 comment:

Eileen said...

Oh, Jeff and I are going to see this over the weekend! He went last Saturday,but alas, I had to work. He liked it so much, he said he'd see it again. Maybe it's a guy thing. I'll let you know.