I am not a football fan whatsoever. I use the Superbowl as a way to get together with family and/or friends who I don’t get to see too often, eat some good food, and have a good time. With that said, the only thing I ever really remember about the big game is a handful of worthy commercials. One commercial from last year’s event that sticks out most clearly is the announcement/trailer for Julius Onah’s The Cloverfield Paradox.
Cloverfield Space Station is tasked with finding and testing an alternate power source, one that is too dangerous to test on earth. Failure after failure causes the team to stay off-planet for almost two full years. Upon one seemingly successful firing of the Shepard particle accelerator, the team unknowingly send themselves into an alternate plane of existence, creating hell in multiple dimensions.
The Cloverfield Paradox is a beautiful film from start to finish. Any film produced by J. J. Abrams is going to be of the highest production value there is. Whether you’re a fan of his or not, there is on denying this fact. The establishing outer space shots are beautiful and look much more impressive than most sci-fi horror films of the modern era.
The cast that makes up the international team of astronauts consists of Daniel Brühl (Inglourious Basterds), Aksel Hennie (Headhunters), Gugu Mbatha-Raw (Odd Thomas), Chris O’Dowd (Thor: The Dark World), John Ortiz (Kong: Skull Island), David Oyelowo (Jack Reacher) and Zhang Ziyi (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon). All of these performers are extremely talented and have been featured in hundreds of films collectively. They help carry The Cloverfield Paradox along as gracefully as possible and their on-screen chemistry is wonderful, whether they are at each others’ throats or saving each others’ lives.
With tremendously talented actors and production value more pristine than that of its peers, The Cloverfield Paradox still seems to be lacking.
Based off of a script by Oren Uziel, this film was originally titled God Particle. Once producer Abrams learned of the script, he saw an opportunity to tie the film into his Cloverfield universe, using it as a way to explain past and future events of the monster-filled variety.
Unfortunately, these newly scripted scenes and plot points don’t translate well as the film is unfolding. Playing out as a survival science fiction flick similar to [but not as dark as] Pandorum, The Cloverfield Paradox just isn’t enough Cloverfield-enough for this kaiju fan. Injecting an earthquake-causing roar in the distance here and mountains of destroyed building debris there isn’t enough to tie this film into the universe seamlessly.
The Cloverfield Paradox is a high quality sci-fi movie; It features top-notch acting by all performers involved and has some great survival horror elements in an isolated outer space setting. It does not do much to entertain the giant monster fans out there, however, so don’t expect to enjoy this film as much as the original or even 10 Cloverfield Lane, if more monsters is what you’re looking for.
If you would like to own this film in your collection regardless, as I did, you can purchase a copy on Blu-ray, available now from Paramount Pictures.
I give this one 2.5 arm-eating wall panels out of 5.