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  • Cloverfield [Blu-ray] [2008] [US Import]
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Cloverfield [Blu-ray] [2008] [US Import]


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Product details

  • Actors: Mike Vogel, T.J. Miller
  • Format: Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 16:9 - 1.77:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Classification: PG-13 (Parental Guidance Suggested) (US MPAA rating. See details.)
  • Studio: Paramount Catalog
  • DVD Release Date: 15 April 2014
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (378 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00IO9D3ZI

Reviews

From Amazon.co.uk

One of the first things a viewer notices about Cloverfield is that it doesn't play by ordinary storytelling rules, making this intriguing horror film as much a novelty as an event. Told from the vertiginous point-of-view of a camcorder-wielding group of friends, Cloverfield begins like a television soap opera about young Manhattanites coping with changes in their personal lives. Rob (Michael Stahl-David) is leaving New York to take an executive job at a company in Japan. At his goodbye party in a crowded loft, Rob’s brother Jason (Mike Vogel) hands a camcorder to best friend Hud (T.J. Miller), who proceeds to tape the proceedings over old footage of Rob’s ex-girlfriend, Beth (Odette Yustman)--images shot during happy times in their ex-relationship. Naturally, Beth shows up at the party with a new beau, bumming Rob out completely. Just before one's eyes glaze over from all this heartbreaking stuff (captured by Hud, who's something of a doofus, in laughably shaky camerawork), the unexpected happens: New York is suddenly under attack from a Godzilla-like monster stomping through midtown and destroying everything and everybody in sight. Rob and company hit the streets, but rather than run with other evacuees, they head toward the center of the storm so that Rob can rescue an injured Beth. There are casualties along the way, but the journey into fear is fascinating and immediate if emotionally remote--a consequence of seeing these proceedings through the singular, subjective perspective of a camcorder and of a story that intentionally leaves major questions unanswered: Who or what is this monster? Where did it come from? The lack of a backstory, and spare views of the marauding creature, are clever ways by producer J.J. Abrams and director Matt Reeves to keep an audience focused exclusively on what’s on the screen. But it also makes Cloverfield curiously uninvolving. Ultimately, Cloverfield, with its spectacular effects brilliantly woven into a home-video look, is a celebration of infinite possibilities in this age of accessible, digital media. -Tom Keogh

Synopsis

A highly-classified video tape confiscated by the U.S. military shows the devastating effects of a monster attack on New York City. Crudely shot on handycam by a group of friends at a party, the film quickly evolves into a blow-by-blow account of the most surreal and terrifying ordeal of their young lives. The first 20 minutes or so could easily be mistaken for some glossy American soap opera, populated as it is by successful, good-looking people. As the camera clumsily weaves its way around the party guests, we're treated to snippets of conversations that provide a back story to the characters' lives. Suddenly and without warning, a series of earth-shattering tremors rock the city, causing mass panic in the streets below. It soon becomes apparent that this is no natural disaster as the city is ripped apart by some gargantuan and malevolent force.
Creature features such as this are often only as good as their special effects will allow, and Cloverfield scores very highly in that department. The visuals are simply stunning and so seamlessly executed that they'll have you ducking for cover. In fact, some of the effects are so uncomfortably realistic--buildings collapsing into plumes of smoke, bits of debris falling from the sky--that they will inevitably evoke painful memories of 9/11. The filmmakers were careful not to reveal the monster too early on in the film, as the anticipation of seeing it for the first time is half the fun. Instead, they tease the viewer with flashes of a giant tail or leg in between skyscrapers. This makes the final reveal that much more satisfying, as the unknown becomes known. But where the film tantalises, it also frustrates as it offers no answers to the most obvious questions; what is this thing? How did it suddenly appear out of nowhere? What's its beef with New York City? Ironically, it's this very inscrutability that makes the film so intriguing, as we are reminded that wanton acts of destruction--such as the terrorist attacks of 9/11--always leave questions unanswered. Shot in real-time in a cinema verite style similar to The Blair Witch Project, Cloverfield's exploitation of the digital video format is a bold move that pays off handsomely.

Customer Reviews

3.0 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

28 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer VINE VOICE on 6 Aug. 2008
Format: DVD
Like the Matrix 10 years ago Cloverfield has set a new standard for action cinema. Movie snobs often dismiss genre movies like this one as low brow. But the genius of Cloverfield is it's structure; the whole movie is an exercise in keeping an audience on the edge of their seats and it works. Every time it looks like things couldn't possibly get worse they do, then just when things look like they've calmed down a tad the next shock hits. None of which sounds that impressive, until you see just how well it's done here.

Although there's nothing oscar worthy from the cast the films is buoyed along by some convincing performances and humor in particular is played just right: it's funny but not so funny that you relax. The story pulls surprisingly few punches and even seems a little daring for a big budget action movie, culminating in a conclusion that stayed with me long after the movie finished; it's often I've said that about a film of this type. Best of all there is more to Cloverfield then just digital effects and screaming. The main characters find themselves caught between an apparently unstoppable natural force and a military or authoritarian presence that is potentially just as deadly (it's not clear which is responsible for the climatic scene under the bridge). As such the story is a fitting parable for the modern mindset of the average person in the west at this time in history: little people caught between corporate hunger, rising and falling political empires, wars they don't understand, apparently uncatchable enemies who wage war in urban areas and of course the environmental holocaust Hollywood has worked so hard to prophecy. The end result reminded me of the sense of powerless desperation that came from watching 'An Inconvenient Truth' for the first time.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Trevor Willsmer HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWER on 11 May 2012
Format: Blu-ray
Having scrupulously avoided Cloverfield for its veritable shopping list of things I hate about many modern movies - not least the obsession with shooting on shakeycam digital where you can't tell what's going on - I was surprised to discover it's actually a surprisingly effective update on the classic kaiju movie that really works as an audience picture. Its real innovation isn't that it's masquerading as a home video record of an unknown giant monster's devastating attack on New York: the `found footage' genre was old long before The Blair Witch Project came along. Rather, it's that instead of going for the big picture like the classic Godzilla movies, this concentrates on the people previous monster movies simply used as background, the ordinary people running for their lives who are usually just there to scream and get stomped on. There's plenty of that along the way, and surprisingly effectively handled, but there's also a real sense of chaos and confusion. Nobody knows what's going on, the creature only briefly glimpsed until the end, its origins unexplained and ultimately unimportant as simply surviving takes precedence for the ever-thinning group of partygoers caught up in the surprisingly spectacular devastation. Characterisation is minimal, as you might expect with its faux reality approach, but what it does have is a genuine sense of immediacy and a palpable sense of fear and desperation as the everyday suddenly gets mightily torn apart. It's surprisingly short, but incredibly effective - perhaps more so on the small screen than the big one - and transcends what could have simply been a marketing gimmick to become a genuinely iconic monster movie for the 21st century.Read more ›
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Paul M VINE VOICE on 8 Jun. 2008
Format: DVD
Having waited for this movie to be released on dvd, i am pleased to say how impressive Cloverfield actually is.A genuinely original monster movie [ if somewhat disturbing, bearing in mind its obvious use of the terrible events of 9 / 11 as a not so subtle reference point ].It is a tense, intellegent and deliberately downbeat film that cleverly disguises its big budget effects through nifty single shot,or out of alignment camera work.This gives Cloverfield the real sense of putting the viewer right into the thick of the action,in a way that few recent movies have matched.

With some brilliantly tense set pieces [and the occasional flaw],Cloverfield is terrific entertainment,and one of the few movies in recent years to justify its build up.

EXTRAS,

The extras on the second disc are adequate, but an opportunity was missed to fully expand on the Cloverfield phenomenon.Where for example are the excellent "news" stories that previewed the film? These would have been most welcome and genuinely in keeping with the story, as would a documentary outlining the whole internet buzz surrounding the film.

What you do get are 5 minutes of deleted scenes[ of minimal consequence ], 2 alternative endings [ ditto],a "making of" documentary which oddly enough erodes some of the mystique surrounding the film.
By far the most interesting are the "in film" mini documentaries that are accessable via icons as the film progresses.However be warned they will unintentionally upset the flow of the movie if you decide to watch them as part of your viewing experience ["news" footage or other stuff relating to the plot may have been more useful in keeping with the spirit of the film].
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