10 Cloverfield Lane [2016] : Badass Way to Embrace the Apocalypse

4:45 AM


First of all, 10 Cloverfield Lane is not a sequel of Cloverfield [2008], like Abrams told us in some interviews before. It's like another story happened in the same event outside Cloverfield movie itself. And in fact, 10 Cloverfield Lane seems to be 2016's most underrated movie, especially in Indonesia. Hey, today (just ONE day after its release day here) I watched it and in the theater, it was only about 10 people inside.

Back to the movie itself, it is directed by Dan Trachtenberg, and 10 Cloverfield Lane is his directional debut! Rumor has it, Abrams gave the directional job on him after fell in love with his directed short movie Portal : No Escape [2010] , it was an adaptation of a video game : Portal. The style of 10 Cloverfield Lane itself is mainly influenced by his previous work though, a depressing situation in a locked bunker.

Dan Trachtenberg's Portal : No Escape [2010]

You can skip the red colored writing if you did't want to get a spoiler :

The story began when Michelle (Winstead), an engaged young adult woman decided to leave her fiancee because of an unknown reason, she later got an accident while the audiences thought that it was an alien invasion! Few minutes later, she woke up legcuffed in an empty and creepy room of an underground bunker. Obviously, in the first time she felt like she was a victim of something evil. Then, an old man (Goodman) came to her and told her to be calm and do whatever he said. But, she didn't believe him right away. She tried to escape in multiple ways and all were useless against Howard, the bulky old man.

Still in the first half of the movie, Howard tried to told Michelle about what happened out there. She still didn't believe him even after she met Emmet (Gallagher), Howard's bunker-builder. Emmet too, told Michelle what happened, but he did it in a dumb way so she still wanted to find out what was really going on out there. Even Michelle tried to betray him before, Howard showed her kindness and trust. She became more tamed than before and seems like those three could live happily forever and together beneath the ground.

But, some clues about Howard's true identity led Michelle and Emmet into a new suspicion : Is Howard evil? What did Howard do to Darcy? Why Howard lied about Megan?

Michelle's will to escape from the bunker grew stronger. Knowing that Emmet was so dumb, Michelle convinced him to fight Howard and planned to escape safely. She designed a suit that could resist contaminated air, so when she could get out, she would still survive. However, Howard knew that they planned something and forced them to confess anyway. Emmet lied to Howard and got a shot at his head eventually. Later, Michelle tricked Howard as an attempt to escape for the last time and she accomplished it.

The ending of the movie was bizarre, she was chased by an alien plane and its infantry, luckily she handled them well. She drove to Houston for joining other surviving humans to fight against the invader. The end.

This movie is brilliantly scripted. Done in mostly 1 location set, this movie brought us no flatness. Its conversations led the audiences to arrange the puzzle diligently. The scriptwriters knew audiences' expectation of the story, so they stirred it up, and let the audiences to think how it might develop to what kind of movie it was. Whenever the audiences having their own fantasy over their mind, this movie surprised them in a novel way. I love how this movie made the predictable plot became so unpredictable.

Trachtenberg himself was cleverly careful about details, he knew every little mistake could destroy the set up of the story. Me myself only found several mistakes to be spotted on, like the different clock time between Michelle's car and her smartphone, and her suit's position when she hid it under her bed (correct me if I'm wrong anyway). This movie also left us unanswered questions at the end, but Trachtenberg's geniusness on making the atmosphere extremely thrilling when it was nothing to be thrilled about, made the unanswered questions wouldn't matter anyway.

The music helped it though, and it was beautiful score after all. I love how Trachtenberg chose to use practical visual effects to build the story instead of CGI. And when it came to use CGI, it went well also. Otherwise, the cinematography team did well on zooming technique, they did it in several occasions, so Trachtenberg would have no need to put another conversation to continue the story on those scenes.

Overall, 10 Cloverfield Lane is simply the best movie in 2016 so far. It has only 3 characters for an epic 103 minutes of thrill. Those 3 characters played by perfectly suited casts. Mary Elizabeth Winstead once again gives us the proof to be the number 1 badass scream queen. Special mention for John Goodman, he was the solid center of this story. This low-budget flick is tense, stimulating, surprising, and you'll love it. A movie to remember.

10 Cloverfield Lane [2016]
Director : Dan Trachtenberg
Screenplay by : Damien Chazelle, Matthew Stuecken, Josh Campbell
Cast : Mary Elizabeth Winstead, John Goodman, John Gallagher, Jr.


Listening to : Shugo Tokumaru - Button

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