Movie Review: Cloverfield Paradox
Updated: May 27, 2019
‘After a scientific experiment aboard the space station involving a particle accelerator has unexpected results, the astronauts find themselves isolated. Following their horrible discovery, the space station crew must fight for survival. ‘
IMDB rating 6.6/10 Metacritic 40/100 Rotten Tomatoes 16%
(Let it be known these are ratings released with the film not even being released for 24hrs)
So I was half-ass watching the Super Bowl and caught a number of teasers and trailers for a number of films like Solo, Avengers: Infinity War, Jurassic World and of course the announcement that the third film in the Cloverfield franchise would be dropped on Netflix right after the game. I enjoyed the first two films and considering I didn’t have any other plans and didn’t need to work in the morning I jumped right to Netflix and gave it a viewing.
So to set the stage of the film it is a prequel to the original Cloverfield film and essentially trying to explain how Cloverfield and 10 Cloverfield Lane came to pass. A lot easier to explain things in reverse right? You would think right. The idea of this film is that the Earth is amidst the brink of World War 3 and running into issues with energy sources and send a station into space to test a new particle accelerator which causes a rip in space-time and there is some multiverse theory thrown in for good measure as well. Things begin to go awry really quickly after the accelerator malfunctions and just continue to go downhill from there.
To me the science fiction of this film just didn’t seem to add up as to how this caused the original events of the franchise which took place in 2008 and this film taking place in the near future we’ll say mid 2020’s maybe. But yet in the present day of the film there is no mention of the kaiju issue it all about the impending war between nations. Apparently, the kaiju just chilled out for a decade and a half or so. I would have thought they would have caused a lot more destruction and more than likely the world wouldn’t have been able to get to the point of putting the station into the sky that caused it in the first place. Perhaps why it's called the Cloverfield Paradox right? I assume its referring to the dimensional mashing/alternate reality. This film made my head hurt thinking about the space-time/alternate universe and paradoxical things trying to figure out how it worked and eventually I gave up and just watched it suspending my disbelief trying not to nitpick anymore.
Now there were a couple big names that I noticed in the credits but it wasn’t the actors that stood out. It was names like J.J. Abrams producing it (as he did the last 2 films) and yes there was a tonne of lens flares so even if missed it you would know he had a hand in it. But also Bear McCreary best known for his musical work from The Walking Dead and Battlestar Galactica (the remake) who happened to do the work for another movie I will be writing a review for Happy Death Day. Ziyi Zhang (of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon fame) was in the film as a supporting role as well which led to quite a bit of subtitles which I wasn’t expecting in the slightest (but then again I really don’t mind subtitles)
Now the budget for the film was I thought pretty sizable for a Netflix film over $25M. I wonder how Netflix can manage to fund films of that magnitude and stay afloat on a regular basis or consistently pay for a series’ that are made for the network like Stranger Things and things like the Crown ($130M for a season!) It looked great having the budget they did but it was lacking from a writing standpoint I think as I had mentioned earlier. The effects were pretty solid overall from the shots of the station to even the part with Mundy’s disembodied arm (you have to see it to understand)
Now there is a fourth movie in the franchise in the works and is set to be released in October of 2018. However, this film will be set even further back in the timeline and go back to World War 2 (1944) where two American paratroopers discover that Nazi’s are using supernatural forces. Sounds like this could be a film for the newer Wolfenstein video game series’ as well. Not sure how they will wrap it into Cloverfield storyline but it will be something to see I guess.
If you enjoyed the previous two Cloverfield films one can only assume you will want to keep the collection complete and view this film as well. I’m ‘meh’ with it but I would have to say it was the worst of the three films without question. I really don’t feel as this film was necessary at all. It almost feels like they just wanted to take the film in a completely different direction from the previous two and figured ‘Hey, let’s write how it all came to pass in a half ass kinda way!’ If you haven’t watched any of the Cloverfield films at all I would just recommend watching the first two and then skipping this one and leave the origin to your imagination you would probably be better off.
2 Beards out of 5