When a new trailer for a film titled 10 Cloverfield Lane was dropped unexpectedly a few months ago, audiences were left wondering if this was a sequel to 2008 found footage monster movie Cloverfield, or just a marketing ploy to get people to see the movie? Either way what really matters is whether it’s any good?
After being hit in a car accident Michelle (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) wakes up to find herself in an bunker with a man named Howard (John Goodman) telling her that a nuclear attack has destroyed the outside world and the air is filled with radiation. So they must stay inside the bunker. Can she trust what he says or is the real danger inside the bunker?
This is one of those movies where you have to be careful what you say in order to avoid spoilers. But what I will say is that 10 Cloverfield Lane is a tightly constructed thriller that makes good use of its limited sets and cast. The enclosed space of the bunker makes the action even more claustrophobic and tense.
With three principal cast members in the bunker the tension derives from the dynamics of the characters. Mary Elizabeth Winestead makes for a capable and resourceful heroine while John Goodman switches from creepy to funny effortlessly. While John Gallagher Jr provides some light relief as the easy going Emmett.
The film is less a direct sequel to Cloverfield and more of a spiritual successor. This may disappoint some people who were hoping for more a follow up to the previous movie. At times the Cloverfield connection does feels tacked on (probably as a result of the original script having no connection with Cloverfield at all). And while I liked the ending I think it may prove divisive with audiences.
Rating 3.5/5 – an exciting and thrilling enclosed space mystery