10 CLOVERFIELD LANE – The Man behind Star Wars/Trek & Mission impossible takes on Horror, Thrillers & Sci-Fi & that’s just for starters
Nutshell – If ever there was a film that the less you know and see of it in advance it is this one. Is it a sequel to the original excellent Cloverfield ?… Well it’s in there somewhere, but with JJ Abrams in the background, who gave us 150 episodes of the ultimate spoiler friendly show Lost before Star Trek and the galaxy far far away there will always be more questions than answers. Part one is effectively Saw like then it hits full-blown Hitchcock for the tense 3 plus hander second section before the third part comes along which is a real barnstorming gobsmacker. Basically three people trapped in an underground bunker after an unknown possible Russian attack. Something for everyone then.
Time – 102 mins (and you won’t be able to take one minute more); Certificate – 15
Tagline – “Monsters Come In Many Forms” or do they !!!!!!!
THE GAY UK FACTOR – No gay angle and nothing really for your cock here so take your straight mates and have a night of quality brain food rather than ogling Messrs Hemsworth, Statham or Reynolds and forgetting the plot.
Cast – A tight team like a good stage play of John Goodman, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, John Gallagher Jr and oh there is a sex god in it with the voice of Bradley Cooper.
Key Player – Mary Elizabeth Winstead is so good here and just as well as she is in every scene. She is believable when vulnerable and can switch to funny or fight back mode in a second which happens a lot here. The film would have been bigger with a starrier cast though.
Budget – $15 million one of the lowest budget American films we have reviewed for a very long time but don’t worry this should make it into the English dictionary under ‘less is more’ and oh that climatic last act… So far it has made back 5 times its budget at $75 million and climbing now that’s a better investment than British Steel.
Best Bit – 40 mins; Well we couldn’t pick anything from the last act due to spoiling the twists for yourselves. At 40 mins Michelle sees the effects outside of the bunker for the first time creating more questions than answers and then gets trapped in an airlock between two evils.
Worst Bit – 30 mins; When the three in the bunker start to let their hair down and relax, have fun and tick the days off from their forced ‘two year’ confinement all to the poppy tune Tell Him by the Exciters. They should have used Bette Midler’s version. It lets up the tension probably necessarily but us gay guys love a full on thrill ride with no brakes.
Little Secret – The petrol station in the film is not Esso or Shell but Kelvin the same as in JJ’s Super 8. It is a tribute to Abram’s maternal grandfather and he puts it in all his projects; In Mission Impossible it is on a letter, in Star Trek the ship is called the USS Kelvin etc etc and we know where it is in Star Wars The Force Awakens but we will let you find that for yourselves – it’s a doozey ! JJ describes this film as the ‘Blood Relative’ of the original movie and in the future they will be linked together in a whole Cloverfield universe with other movies he hopes to make which will be tough as the first one is hand-held camera footage and this is standard filmed action from beyond the fourth wall that we are used too.
Movie Mistake – There are so many mysteries in this film that you are not sure what is a film mistake and what is deliberate to keep the questions flying around. Should the blood on the ring from the dead girl some years ago be still wet, the appearing and disappearing bandage on Goodman’s leg is it a mistake or the passage of time and the change of daytime to night in the ‘farmhouse’ scene was it deliberate. What is wrong is the ease that a character gets radio messages in one scene but not for the rest of the movie and oh that ever-changing size of spaghetti. Where was the continuity boy, probably off set blowing someone to try and get a walk on part.
Awards – Not for this one but it will boost Winstead’s career immensely and it is great to have Goodman back. JJ Abrams is probably working on Cloverfield 3 which we will probably get before his next Star Wars outing.
Further Viewing – Cloverfield, Room, All 53 of Alfred Hitchcocks, Saw’s 1-6, Sleuth and The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Also Metal Hurlant Chronicles: Shelter Me which has the same plot and even the same character name, and series two of Lost where a guy is staying in a bunker fearing outside contamination with the same end results so now JJ is recycling his own plots and we are starting to feel as though we are trapped in a time-warp on an island with a smoke monster and some polar bears.
Any Good – If you want a great thriller that is not like anything you have ever seen before although in many ways is this is for you. A great change from all the blockbusters and superheroes but fans of those will appreciate this too. A lot of great talent is behind this film and as the budget is so low these creative genius’ are free to let their hair down and have fun with the story, its set-up and pay-off. Most of all it is so so tense and you will be gripping the arm of your seat so tightly as if you have just got a hold of Channing Tatum’s bulging ‘Magic Mike‘ for the very first time.
Rating 54/100 (54th out of the last 100 films reviewed with 1 being Gay UK filmatic ejaculatery heaven and 100 being as much fun as watching a winner of the Voice’s mega successful chart career)
Estbablished gay writer for a well known monthly magazine Dirty Boyz part of Boyz magazine with about 30 pages published each time. Mainly adult entertainment, fetish, travel, events, film reviews. Also pop culture from movies/TV and music.