Sunday, January 27, 2008

Marlena Diamond

Just saw Cloverfield tonight. I have to say that I really enjoyed it, despite the huge drop in its second week earnings. (It can be expected for movies to drop 40 to 50%, which is pretty bad, but from some accounts, Cloverfield dropped in the 60% range.)

Cloverfield is definitely your popcorn, super-action type of movie, but it's not the glossy over-produced type like Transformers. This is mainly due to the guerrilla style that it's shot in a la Blair Witch. But at the same time it does have great production values. If you combine the effects with the hand held style of shooting, you really feel as if New York is being attacked by some monster. Also, since the first twenty minutes or so of the movie is dedicated to building up the setting and characters, you feel a connection with some of them. While there is very little character development (understandably because it's supposed to be from the point of view of a guy who was filming while in the thick of things), there is enough to enjoy the being with the characters. I liked the character of Hud the most. He was the one filming the action, and he surprisingly provided the comic relief part of the movie.

If you even think about making movies at all, it's so interesting to see how J.J. Abrams fit in the necessary criteria that makes a movie, especially in this documentary style format. Just feeling the flow of things-- it's supposed to be recovered footage, but it thankfully still feels like a movie, or else there would be no movie to enjoy. There are ups and downs, appropriate pauses so that you can take it all in. Sure, you have to suspend your beliefs many times for the sake of enjoying the movie (how long does the battery last?), but it is a science-fiction movie after all. Maybe it's because I analyzed the movie making aspect of Cloverfield, but I really enjoyed the devices employed in this movie. You can see the product tie-ins and, you will see, even the clever way they got to show the back-story of some characters (involves old footage left in the camera while they were taping the current monster problem). It really is impressive to think that the makers of Cloverfield could create a movie that is in hand-held footage and still give you a movie experience. It's pulled off better than The Blair Witch Project (probably not too hard of a feat).

Cloverfield is highly recommended for fans who love going to the movies. I can't believe it has made me excited for Star Trek (J.J. Abrams next project). J.J. and Cloverfield is that good.

By the way, since this is Lips Like Asukal, I have to talk about a girl. While Cloverfield has no big-name stars (although I do know two actors, one of whom is from my sadly-cancelled The Black Donnellys), I have to mention Lizzy Caplan. You may know her from Mean Girls as Lohan's friend who was friends with that gay dude. Lizzy looks really good in Cloverfield. It would not be fair to call her an almost crush of mine, because I've always found her attractive even back in Mean Girls (when she was supposed to be the "ugly" friend). She also plays a sarcastic girl in Cloverfield, probably ups her hotness in it.

Love those eyes.

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